Spain is home to one of the most unique approaches to cannabis policy out of any nation on the planet. The nation has one of the most robust and vibrant cannabis communities on earth, yet the cannabis public policies in Spain are very outdated.
Anyone with internet access and the ability to use a popular online search engine can see that private cannabis clubs are located throughout Spain, with huge clumps of them being located in Barcelona in particular. Unfortunately, Spain’s laws and regulations are such that all of those clubs operate in a legal grey area versus being licensed and outright accepted.
Cannabis advocates inside and outside of Spain were hopeful that the start of 2023 would see a cannabis regulatory measure finally reach the finish line and get the nation’s laws to match reality, however, that has yet to materialize.
What has materialized is an agreement in Spain’s Congress to, eventually, regulate low-THC cannabis. Low-THC cannabis is often referred to as ‘cannabis light’ and is very popular in many European nations. Perhaps someday Spain will join those nations in regulating such products. Per Europa Press (translated to English):
The PSOE has agreed on an initiative in Congress with Unidas Podemos, Esquerra (ERC) and Bildu that opens the door to a future regulation of non-psychoactive cannabis, that whose percentage of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the euphoric drug, is less than 1% .
Unidas Podemos and the two pro-independence allies of the Government presented an initiative this Wednesday in the Congressional Agriculture Commission demanding the regulation of the production and commercialization of this crop in order to offer legal certainty to producers and marketers.
It will be interesting to see if 1) this type of reform actually gets adopted in the near future, and 2) if it will have any meaningful impact on Spain’s cannabis industry. To be clear – providing this type of reform to the nation’s emerging cannabis industry is helpful, although, exactly how helpful it would be is open for debate.
What Spain really needs is a comprehensive cannabis policy and regulatory overhaul. Cannabis products containing all types of THC percentages, including concentrates that contain large amounts of THC, are being consumed every day in Spain. It’s a reality that lawmakers and regulators ignore at a cost to public health.
Consumers and patients in Spain deserve safe access to tested cannabis. Entrepreneurs in Spain deserve to operate in a business landscape that affords them every reasonable opportunity to supply the nation’s demand in a way that boosts public health and generates revenue for public coffers.