Bong, baguette & bon vivre?
Our French neighbors are generally considered more of a life-affirming people with good food, good wine and the serenity of a cruise ship captain in the port of Monaco. But when it comes to cannabis, the flimsy idyll is deceptive. If you've being to France before you may not believe that France exhibits one of the toughest cannabis laws in Europe. It is among the six remaining EU countries that criminalize the mere use of cannabis. And plenty of it! So if you wanna smoke weed in France, you have to be very careful. Because even smoking a joint you can be punished with the maximum statutory penalty of up to a year behind bars and a hefty fine. Like the ban policy in general, this does not prevent anyone from actually giving up cannabis in France.
Cannabis in France: 54 tons annually in preventive detention
The statistics show what inevitably becomes clear after a short time in the land of frog legs cuisine: Over 100,000 arrests of cannabis consumers and also 54 tons of seized buds are carried out by the gendarmerie every year. But this irrational consumer persecution could soon end here too. The French health minister Agnés Buzyn publicly announced a legal review in summer 2018. France is trying all possible for the preparations to legalize marijuana. Patrice Ribeiro, a spokesman for the French police union, supports the proposed change in the law. “It's a good idea based on reality,” said Ribeiro. "Most cops who catches someone in the act of smoking cannabis tells the person to throw away the joint - but don't pursue it any further. " The time and economic expenditure, which ultimately did not lead to a positive result, is too immense.
Coffeeshops Light thanks to an EU loophole
Recently, reports of numerous “coffee shop” openings in restrictive France made the rounds. Behind it are a couple of small shops selling CBD flowers and cosmeticsTrade with vanishingly low levels of THC. There are now about a dozen of them, about half of them in Paris. It was only last year that the shopkeepers discovered that, unlike France, the European Union allows trade in hemp products that contain less than 0.2 percent THC. A legalization of cannabis in France or decriminalization as announced by President Macron remains an unreachable distance. The current work of the lobbyists in the fight against the evil, green haze is too immense. And so on holiday on the Côte d'Azur it will probably continue to be baguette and vino instead of bong and weed.