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Aspiring Cannabis Cultivation Associations Start Submitting Applications In Germany

As of July 1st, 2024, cannabis cultivation associations became legal in Germany as part of the nation’s new CanG adult-use cannabis legalization law. The first provisions of the law pertaining to personal cultivation, possession, and consumption went into effect on April 1st, 2024.

Many jurisdictions in Germany are still in the process of establishing the regulatory framework for their area’s eventual cannabis cultivation associations. The Federal Association of Cannabis Cultivation Associations (BCAv) recently compiled a list of the local authorities that are established so far.

North Rhine-Westphalia is one area of Germany that is already accepting applications for cannabis cultivation associations, albeit “only a few” so far according to local reporting from ASB Zeitung.

“In North Rhine-Westphalia, a few Cannabis growing associations filed applications for permits starting July 1st, as revealed by a dpa survey of the responsible district administrations.” stated ASB Zeitung.

“According to a spokesperson, the first applications have been submitted in the Regierungsbezirk Duesseldorf, but a specific number could not yet be named by the authority. Three applications have been filed at the Bezirksregierung Köln by Tuesday, and one in Detmold. At the Bezirksregierung Arnsberg, there were initially “three incomplete applications,” according to a spokesperson. The Bezirksregierung Münster reported no applications yet.” ASB Zeitung also stated.

Part of Germany’s adult-use legalization model involves permitting noncommercial social cannabis clubs. The clubs have to adhere to various rules, including limiting membership to a maximum of 500 members, and restricting sales to 50 grams per member a month (30 grams for members 18-20 years old). Clubs will also be permitted to sell cannabis clones and seeds.

“According to the Ministry of Health, the state of North Rhine-Westphalia wants to authorize up to 3,000 cannabis cultivation associations and hand over the approval process to the district governments.” states NW News in its original domestic reporting (translated from German to English).

“We assume that, if we calculate that one cultivation association is possible per 6,000 inhabitants, a maximum of 3,000 cultivation associations will exist in North Rhine-Westphalia in the future,” State Secretary Matthias Heidmeier stated according to NW News’ reporting. North Rhine-Westphalia has a total population of roughly 18 million people.

In a nationwide online survey conducted in May 2024 by Pronova BKK involving 1,000 people in Germany aged 18 and over, 10% of survey respondents reported consuming cannabis ‘regularly.’ Over a quarter of respondents reported using cannabis ‘occasionally.’

Among reported ‘regular’ cannabis consumers, 51% plan to cultivate cannabis at home and 44% plan to join a cannabis social club once they are permitted to launch in July 2024. Interest in joining a cannabis social club was higher among Gen Z members compared to Gen Y in the survey results.

Among non-consumers, 8% of them are considering home cultivation now that it is legal. Adults can cultivate up to 3 plants in their private residences in Germany. Additionally, German adults can possess up to 25 grams when away from their residences.

According to the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction’s (EMCDDA) recently published ‘2024 European Drug Report’, 34.7% of German adults have consumed cannabis at least once in their lives and 8.8% report having consumed cannabis within the last month.

According to the results of a recent YouGov poll, many German adults have already purchased cannabis clones or seeds. When asked, ‘Have you purchased cannabis seeds for personal cultivation since cannabis legalization?,’ 7% of YouGov poll participants answered that they have already purchased cannabis clones and/or seeds.

Additionally, 11% of poll participants stated that while they have not made a purchase yet, but that they plan on doing so in the future. Four percent of poll participants stated that they didn’t know or didn’t provide an answer, and the remainder indicated that they have no current plans to purchase cannabis clones or seeds.