No matter how strange this period of time is and what it will be remembered for, cannabis reform can not be held back because of a global pandemic. Indeed, during a month of new lockdowns, several countries continued on a path to legalization that cannot be held back.
Israel Commits To Recreational Reform In 9 Months
By far the biggest news is that Israel, home of the original cannabis reform, has announced that it will proceed with a recreational market in about 9 months. Users will have to be at least 21 and will not be able to consume the drug in public.
One of the biggest problems facing Israeli patients, a problem which has continued even after pharmacy chain distribution, is that patients are still having a hard time accessing their medication. Beyond this reason? Decrim alone (as the incoming Biden Administration has committed to) is not enough to address the many issues of the continuing black market.
This is also an interesting timetable for sure – coming on the heels of several national elections where cannabis was one of the hottest political topics – and roughly scheduled for when Luxembourg will begin its own recreational cannabis experiment.
That this announcement also comes about a month before the WHO is expected to meet to decide the scheduling of cannabis and its extracts is also an interesting statement – globally.
Fall 2021, as a result, is likely to be a big season for recreational reform.
Argentina Moves Forward On Medical Reform, Cultivation, Subsidized Access
South America has also made strides on the reform front. Argentina has also just announced that three years after beginning the first tentative steps into research, patients will be able to cultivate their own cannabis. As of November 12, existing patients who are registered with the government may cultivate their own cannabis.
Even more intriguing, Argentinian health insurers are now mandated to cover the cost of the drug when it is prescribed by a doctor.
The new regulations are specifically designed to increase access for patients who are still struggling – just about everywhere – to afford the cost of their drug. And further, to make sure that every Argentinian patient has access to the whole plant itself – not just extracts.
Bottom line? 2021 is sure to be an interesting year.
Be sure to book your tickets for the International Cannabis Business Conference when it returns to Europe in 2021