Amsterdam-Oost added to legal cannabis cultivation trial
The Council of Ministers has decided that the district of Amsterdam-Oost will be included in the much-discussed cannabis trial to test the legalization of cannabis cultivation. In the trial, legal growers supply cannabis to coffee shops. The addition of Amsterdam as the 11th municipality assumes that this "will not lead to delays."
It is not ruled out that coffee shops could be supplied "at some point" in 10 participating municipalities, but not in 11. Therefore it is described as "desirable" that a later start date be chosen for the 11th municipality.
A phased start to the cannabis experiment does not mean that it will also end at different times. "For all 11 participating municipalities, the trial will end at the same time," the council said.
Earlier, it was announced that the cannabis trial will begin on Dec. 15 with a so-called start-up phase. The trial will then begin with two legal growers who will supply coffee shops in Breda and Tilburg. With the experience gained from this phase, the other participating municipalities will eventually join the long-awaited trial as well, according to a letter to Parliament.
However, after the six-week start-up phase, the actual experiment starts. From then on, the coffee shops included are only allowed to sell regulated cannabis. In general, the cannabis trial will last up to 5.5 years, Het Parool reported.
Joachim Helms, spokesman for the Association of Cannabis Retailers, previously said he was glad Amsterdam was included in the much-discussed trial. "If you want to fight infiltration, you should use this tool to do so. However, the coffee shop owners are done with the tolerance policy, it can't go fast enough for us," he told the newspaper.
The trial, which has been postponed several times, aims to show how legal cultivation and distribution affects public safety and the quality of cannabis.
Reporting by ANP and NL Times