Comparing Cannabis Laws: Luxembourg vs Germany
As countries around the world continue to reform their cannabis policies, it's interesting to compare the different approaches taken. Recently, Luxembourg's Parliament approved a measure that legalizes cannabis possession and cultivation for adults, while Germany is also in the process of considering a cannabis legalization measure. This article will compare the cannabis laws of these two European nations.
Luxembourg's Cannabis Law
Last week, Luxembourg's Parliament passed a measure that legalizes the possession of up to 3 grams of cannabis and the cultivation of up to 4 plants in a private residence for adults aged 18 and over. This law, however, does not include a commercial component, at least not initially.
The lawmakers' decision, which was passed by a 38-22 vote, is clearly limited by global legalization standards. The best comparison might be the State of Vermont in the United States, which legalized the possession of up to one ounce of cannabis and the cultivation of up to two plants in 2018, but initially prohibited commercial sales.
Germany's Proposed Cannabis Law
Meanwhile, in Germany, a cannabis legalization measure has been in the works for the last two years. The proposed model would be considerably more robust than Luxembourg's law, as it includes provisions for cannabis clubs.
Some of the provisions being considered in Germany include the requirement for all club properties where cannabis is cultivated and/or stored to be tightly secured, the need for every club to have a 'trained addiction and prevention officer', and the need to comply with residue limits for pesticides and fertilizers. The proposal also includes personal possession (25 grams) and cultivation limits (3 plants), as well as the eventual launch of regional adult-use cannabis commerce pilot programs.
Comparing the Two Laws
When comparing Luxembourg's new law with Germany's proposed law, it's clear that Germany's model is more comprehensive. Luxembourg's law, with its low possession limit and no legal way to obtain cannabis beyond gifting or personal cultivation, is likely to encounter problems. For instance, under the new law, buying and possessing more than three grams of cannabis in Luxembourg is punishable by a prison sentence of up to six months. This seems illogical considering that even a novice cannabis cultivator can yield harvests that are far more than 3 grams per plant.
As the stigma around cannabis continues to subside, it's hoped that Luxembourg will work to improve its law, especially considering that legalization is looming across the border in Germany. If Luxembourg does not improve its current law, it may miss out on a significant economic opportunity once Germany legalizes cannabis. It's clear that the world is watching as these two European nations navigate the complexities of cannabis legalization.