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Sale of Cannabis in Coffee Shops Now in Question

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Netherlands has always been in question about its soft drug policy. Now the sale of a strong cannabis called as ‘skunk’ will face a ban in the country. The Dutch government has put a limit on the strength of the cannabis sold. They are using Tetrahydrocannabinol or simply THC concentration to distinguish between the different cannabis available. According to the government a maximum level of 15% THC is allowed. If the concentration of the cannabis exceeds 15% then mental health could be harmed. Currently a citizen of Holland is allowed to grow 5 cannabis plants at home however transportation or large scale production is considered illegal.

Many coffee shops are popular in Holland especially in Amsterdam for providing cannabis for personal use. These coffee shops are a heavy tourist destination. The shops are allowed to sell cannabis but not alcohol or any other drugs. Coffee shops which sell cannabis were created in 1970s. The objective according to the government was to separate cannabis from the high end drugs. Coffee shops today are however confused with the policies. According to them the guidelines of the sales is unclear. Maurice Veldman, who is representative of such coffee shops, stated “Commercial growers are already breaking the law and their testing is legal. It is unclear what the shops have to do.”
Cannabis Coffee shops

The government realizing the unfriendliness amongst other countries is also planning to ban tourists from the coffee shops, trying to put a halt to drug tourism in their country. The current THC concentration in cannabis sold in coffee shops is also too high according to them. The current level ranges from 16% to 18%, hence they are trying to bring it down to 15%. A coffee shop owner has said that this will not affect anything and in fact could turn out to more harmful. According to him the sales of cannabis will increase due to the low concentration and so will the consumption of cigarettes hence posing a health issue. The Dutch government on the other hand wants its citizens to realize that highly concentrated cannabis can be harmful. Despite lenient laws the consumption of cannabis in Holland is not as high as other European countries a welcome sight to all the supporters of the drug policy. UK, Germany, Czech Republic, Denmark, Spain, France, Slovakia and Italy all have a higher usage of cannabis despite their strict laws.

Editor :   Health Filed under Healthcare.

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