Cannabis Now reports
At a time when many parts of the world are experiencing an acceleration in cannabis policy reform, Spain has moved at its own pace. Legally speaking, cannabis is illegal (decriminalized) in Spain, however, enforcement is inconsistent, and private cannabis activity is permitted. That combination has fostered an environment that’s very favorable for cannabis consumers, but it poses challenges for advocates seeking to regulate cannabis in Spain. This is because it creates an enthusiasm gap for reform efforts of sorts.
It’s no secret that Spain is bursting with cannabis commerce activity. Any cannabis consumer who has traveled to Spain, particularly Barcelona, will likely be quick to tell you that marijuana is easy to acquire there. They will also probably tell you that the cannabis is of outstanding quality—all of that creates a double-edged sword.
Why Regulate Cannabis In Spain?
Why pass regulations if things are so great for consumers? This is a logical question that points to the heart of the unique situation Spain finds itself in. After all, cannabis clubs are common in Spain, and cannabis is largely tolerated, particularly on a personal level. So why rock the boat? It’s a popular discussion point that comes up early and often at the International Cannabis Business Conference event in Barcelona every year.
As good as things are in Spain, believe it or not, they could be even better in multiple ways via a regulated industry. Before people get heartburn, I am not advocating for overburdensome regulations. What I am advocating for are things like cannabis product testing. Ensuring that cannabis products are tested and free from harmful contaminants alone would be a great improvement, brought about by regulation. This would be particularly true for medicial marijuana patients.
For entrepreneurs and investors, implementing sensible regulations would eliminate the uncertainty that goes hand-in-hand with an industry largely operating in a gray area. Sure, there would be licensing fees and other costs associated with regulation. However, those additional costs would be well worth it in the long run, both from the perspective of raising the revenue potential of the overall industry as well as eliminating the risk of businesses being shut down and the owners and/or staffers being arrested.
Is Help On The Way?
Back in June lawmakers in Spain approved medical cannabis recommendations for the first time, although it was unclear what, if any, traction the recommendations would receive with the Ministry of Health. That question was finally answered this month when Spain’s Ministry of Health announced that they’re currently working on medical cannabis regulations.
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