Confezione cannabis light

Selling light cannabis in tobacconists

Marijuana inflorescences next to cigarettes: is it possible?

Prohibition is a very difficult cultural problem to fight. Often we go beyond the alleged dangerousness of the substance: for prohibitionists the problem is neither cannabis nor its effects, but the very idea of ​​the "joint" with all the reactionary imagery that it brings with it. Feeding these people the aesthetics of marijuana, replicated in dozens of shop windows in every city, could certainly have contributed to making cannabis more tolerated.

Something has changed in this last period and the law allows the sale of light cannabis inflorescences in tobacconists . An additional opportunity to implement your earnings in a time of great economic crisis, such as that generated by the Coronavirus.

What was the situation like before 2019?

In 2016, Italy chose to legalize light cannabis , cannabis sativa almost completely free of THC and rich in CBD , a non-psychoactive active ingredient responsible for the positive effects of marijuana on mood and the body. Light cannabis sold in Italy must be produced on the national territory, choosing one of the eight Italian genetics present in the Official Catalog of the European Community , since law 242/2016 prohibits the importation and hybridization of light marijuana plants.

Law 242/2016 has been operational since January 2018 and allows the "cultivation of hemp of the permitted varieties registered in the Common Catalog of Varieties of Agricultural Plant Species, pursuant to Article 17 of Council Directive 2002/53/EC, of 13 June 2002, which do not fall within the scope of application of the consolidated law on the regulation of narcotics and psychotropic substances ". The law also legalizes the sale of cannabis derivatives.

After the initial boom in hemp shops and grow shops, legal marijuana appeared in tobacconists starting from September 2018 .

Some merchants were courageous pioneers who opened this new frontier, like the owner of a tobacconist in the center of Bologna: « I am a merchant and obviously I open myself up to all earning possibilities. If it is now legal in Italy, I don't see what the problem is. After all, it is a product like many others, with VAT at 22% and without the need for any particular license ." "The first results have been good - he adds - and those who buy it are mainly people between 30 and 40 years old, who however do not usually consume marijuana".

He is not the only tobacconist in the center of Bologna to have chosen to sell light cannabis . The testimony of another shopkeeper in the center is enlightening for identifying the typical buyers of light cannabis. According to the tobacconist: « Compared to older customers, kids seem very skeptical , perhaps because they prefer cannabis with higher THC. Ultimately, it is a product in line with this type of activity. We have different types, based on every need, and among my customers who purchase there is also one with back problems, following an accident, who uses light cannabis as a painkiller ."

What happens in 2019?

On May 30, the Court of Cassation ruled definitively on the fate of light cannabis. The Supreme Court of Cassation has prohibited the sale of cannabis derivatives unless they are "without doping efficacy" . Currently the THC concentration must be less than 0.2%."

The important thing is to be sure, through analysis, that the % of cannabinoids present are respected within the deadlines. Therefore with THC lower than 0.2%, i.e. without the doping effect established by law. If a trader respects these rules there are no problems of any kind. Both for the seller and for the grower. Even if the latter is required to personally provide the analyzes that certify the cannabinoids. While for merchants the % reported by the manufacturer is valid.

Beyond the issue linked to the modification of law 242/2016, the sale of light marijuana continues with great results.

Cannabis light and tobacco shops: what are the risks? 

For some time, tobacconists, through Fit, had asked for an intervention that would shed light on the legality of the sale of light cannabis-based products to the public.

A law exists in this regard and does not seem to exclude the possibility of selling light cannabis in tobacconists. The law in question is n.1074/1968, which prohibits Salts and Tobacco from "selling products suitable for substituting Monopoly products" : it means that no tobacconist can sell smoking products without a license from the state Monopolies.

And here's the catch. Light cannabis, in fact, is certified as a product for "technical use" and not intended for inhalation, therefore it cannot be considered a substitute product for tobacco. So on a legal level there are all the grounds to consider this product salable within tobacconists and other product categories such as bars, private clubs etc...

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