Dutch legal cannabis cultivation trial stalled
The Dutch pilot program to test the legalization of the production of cannabis could be delayed. Ten cities were set to take part on the pilot, set to kick off this autumn, but “too many uncertainties” remain, Arnhem Mayor Ahmed Marcouch wrote in a letter to city council.
Those issues could prevent the program from getting off the ground on time, ANP and NOS reported.
The experiment is meant to prove whether it’s possible to make the cultivation of cannabis legal. The independent research will also take into account the effects that would have on safety and public order and health.
Marcouch explained that the growers needed more time to be able to supply a large enough volume of high-quality cannabis. He said it already became clear in April that potential delays may occur. The first signals of that happening arose during the meeting of the ten participating municipalities and the ministers of Justice and Health.
A spokesperson for the Ministry of Justice told NOS this was not so much a “delay”, but more the result of the importance of a careful selection process with strict conditions. At the end of last year, ten suppliers were selected from about forty received applications to participate in the trial. Those growers then underwent a screening process. They were to be approved if no objections were lodged against them.
Aside from Arnhem, the nine municipalities involved are Almere, Breda, Groningen, Heerlen, Hellevoetsluis, Maastricht, Nijmegen, Tilburg, and Zaanstad. The four largest Dutch cities of Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague and Utrecht decided not to participate because they did not approve of the way the trial was designed.