Cannabis: Germany Lauterbach presents key points for legalization

Lauterbach presents key points for legalization. He presented the right key points to the Federal Cabinet today on Wednesday. 

We already reported about it last week. These “old” key points were an unofficial leak. Now the cornerstones have been corrected and officially presented. This time there is much less to criticize and the plan is actually acceptable. 

The most important points

  1. Possesses from 20 – 30 grams
  1. No THC cap
  1. Three flowering female plants
  1. Instead of the 20 grams described in the leak, up to 30 grams could also be allowed. That’s still a little and well below the 100 grams required by CaNoKo, but it’s at least a start. Of course, there can always be upward potential.
  1. Not establishing a THC cap is probably the best news on the new frontiers. An upper limit would not crowd out the black market and would therefore not be conducive to health protection. It is therefore essential for legalization that there is no limit on the THC value. However, there may be a THC limit for those under the age of 21 to avoid any “brain damage.” This is comparable to beer/wine and liquor for alcohol. However, this time the restriction applies to people aged 18-21 and not to minors. However, it makes no difference whether a joint is consumed with 0.2 grams of cannabis (10% THC) or 0.1 grams (20% THC). The total amount of THC (20 mg) is the same in both cases.
  1. The semantic formulation of three “flowering” plants bodes well. Thus, according to this formulation, multiple plants can be grown, of which only three female plants are allowed to flower. So it can be possible to have three plants in bloom and plant more in the pot. This would prevent a period when no plants are flowering. Plants can be grown all year round. However, there is the question of the amount of flowers. A plant can happily produce 30 grams of dried flowers. With three plants you would be at three times the upper limit. However, this cap only applies to purchased cannabis; there is no cap for home-grown cannabis. 

The federal press conference

Karl Lauterbach revealed in the Federal Press Conference (BPK) that no edibles are currently planned. This is being done because a preliminary review by the EU Commission is pending. This preliminary check is made to secure the key points. As soon as the Federal Cabinet has drawn up a complete draft law, it will be submitted to the EU Commission for official examination. 

If the preliminary review comes up with a “clearly negative” result, the plan will not go ahead, if the answer is “clearly positive”, the draft will be revised and work on legalization will continue. Lauterbach would like the EU Commission to secure this for the first time. He wants to play with “open cards” here. 

Depending on how the EU Commission’s answer stands out, there may be edibles or an upper limit for under-21s. 

The sale should take place here in licensed specialist shops. A sale in pharmacies is also possible. Lauterbach is currently not assuming legalization by the summer of 2023. He assumes that if things “go well” it will be legal to consume in 2024. In addition, Lauterbach assumes that there can be impunity for non-violent cannabis offences. Lauterbach considers it possible that the criminal entries could be deleted from the federal central register. An amnesty regulation may also be possible. Permitting Cannabis Social Clubs is not up for debate at this time. Lauterbach is currently playing it safe and leaves many questions unanswered. Later changes are still pending. It’s just “not foreseen” at this time. It is currently still being checked. The adjusted threshold for the driver’s license question will also take place. Lauterbach closes the BPK with a positive statement: “We cannot prevent consumption, addiction.”

However, these cornerstones are not yet a complete law, but only a draft law. Nevertheless, this is a significant improvement over the old design. The federal government is required to take a strict line in legalization. The EU Commission is now the decision-maker as to whether the legalization can be carried out in the planned form.


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