Is weed legal in Switzerland? Well, unlike a number of countries, this isn’t a simple yes or no answer. There are a few unclear aspects of the cannabis laws in Switzerland, primarily depending on the type of cannabis in question. It also depends on the amount, the potency, and a few other factors. There is, as usual, a difference between recreational and medicinal cannabis. However, the future of cannabis in Switzerland looks bright.
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What Kind Of Weed Is Legal In Switzerland?
Amazingly Switzerland has different laws depending on the strength of the cannabis. Shops can legally sell any weed products that have less than 1% THC. This means that those suffering from minor medical issues can use low THC cannabis legally to monitor pain, nausea, and other issues that may affect their daily lives. Essentially it is the THC that has been made illegal in Switzerland, rather than the plant.
It is still possible for patients to acquire a medical exemption for stronger forms of cannabis. Unfortunately, it is not at all easy and the process for obtaining stronger cannabis is a complete nightmare for patients and their carers. Since 2013 it has not been an offense to carry up to 10 grams of high-THC containing cannabis. However, it is very much illegal to smoke cannabis, and if you are spotted by the police you can receive a hefty fine.
Weed Laws Of Switzerland
Essentially, carrying over 10 grams or consuming high THC cannabis is completely illegal. Those found smoking will likely receive a fine of CHF 100, and in more drastic cases may be arrested and sentenced to prison time. This is reserved for those who are found with large quantities of cannabis and appear to intend to deal. As time goes on the Swiss are definitely looking like one of the pilot European countries for cannabis legalization.
Switzerland’s Budding Cannabis Industry
The Swiss are fascinating to monitor when it comes to their cannabis industry. This is partly because they aren’t part of the European Union, despite bordering France, Italy, and Germany, three of the EU’s largest members. This means that Switzerland is not beholden to the same restrictive agreements as other EU countries. Even from the relatively limited sales of low THC cannabis, Switzerland has seen a marked improvement in its economy.
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The medical aspects of cannabis are already widely advertised, and as time goes on cities started looking into Cannabis Clubs and other similar financial ventures. Basel, Bern, Geneva, and Zurich, four of the five largest Swiss cities were set to open Cannabis Clubs, similar in nature to those in Spain. The plan which was announced in 2016 never came to fruition, however. In 2019 the tax revenue from legal cannabis hit 15.1 million francs (15.9m USD), which just three years earlier, was closer to the 400,000 mark. Despite some setbacks, Switzerland’s cannabis scene is only growing.
The Future Of Weed In Switzerland
The future looks bright for legal weed in Switzerland. Every year the country considers alterations to the cannabis laws, especially as usage is still going up. The consumption of cannabis is rising, while the actual prosecutions are declining. It’s not all sunshine and rainbows of course. There are still many mental, financial, and health barriers that need to be crossed. But things are definitely looking up for the Swiss public in the near future.
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