Canberra’s cannabis laws do not address supply problem, meaning buying the drug will remain illegal
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Cannabis will be legal in the ACT come the end of the month, but those hoping to light up might have to break the law to do so.
- Buying, selling and trading cannabis after January 31 will remain illegal in the ACT
- Academics are worried potential pot purchasers will go to drug dealers
- Calls for “cannabis social clubs” have been rejected by the ACT Government
The controversial new laws legalise growing, possessing and smoking small quantities of cannabis.
If you are over 18 you can grow the plant, collect up to 50 grams of dried bud, and smoke it as you like within your own home (provided there are no children around).
But the laws do not offer any guidance at all on how it is supposed to be acquired.
There will not be any cannabis shops opening up, as buying and selling the drug remains strictly illegal.
It also cannot be gifted from one person to another.
Cultivating two plants — to a limit of four per household — is perfectly legal but buying cannabis seeds is not.
Professor Simon Lenton from Curtin University’s National Drug Research Institute argued the laws left people looking to use cannabis with few options outside of drug dealers.
“Either they’re going to go to the illegal market or they’re going to miss out,” he said.
“It really is a problem for how the majority of people in the ACT who smoke cannabis are going to access the cannabis.”
The ACT Government is quite clear on the matter, arguing its approach is around “harm minimisation”, not opening doors to cannabis for potential users.
“This approach seeks to ensure that adults who are in possession of cannabis do not have to face the prospect of criminal penalty for possession and are more easily able to seek help for addiction or treatment for the adverse effects of cannabis,” a spokesperson said.
“It is not the Government’s intention to legalise the gifting of cannabis between individuals, other acts of supply, or the commercial sale of cannabis.”
Could weed shops work?
New Zealand is currently weighing up its options on legalising cannabis, ahead of a referendum on the question in late 2020.
The current plan suggests a tightly regulated commercial model, with cannabis sold in licensed shops.
It would not be advertised, or sold to anyone under 20 and the potency of cannabis sold will be restricted.
Like the ACT, the New Zealand Government is also pitching legalisation as a harm minimisation measure.
“The primary objective of the legislation is to reduce overall cannabis use and limit the ability of young people to access cannabis,” New Zealand Justice Minister Andrew Little said.
Anyone who wants to smoke it can do so at home, and in licensed venues — but not where alcohol is being sold.
It raises the possibility of cannabis cafes, like those found in parts of Europe.
“You might be able to enjoy a cup of coffee or tea with your cannabis product, but not alcohol,” Mr Little said.
Some ACT MLAs have indicated they could be supportive of commercialisation down the track, arguing it would help cut criminal gangs out of the cannabis business.
But it will not be an option for the foreseeable future, due to federal regulations that cannot be overcome.
Professor Lenton said going by the experience in North America, adding profit to the mix did not necessarily work out.
He argued it encouraged the consumption of ever-stronger strains of cannabis.
“What we’ve heard about in North America is very much commercially driven, profit-driven markets, where industry is really in the market trying to maximize its profit,” he said.
“And then we get the very serious problems that we’ve seen associated with alcohol and tobacco use and a lot of the problems that are emerging now look like the worst of that.”
‘Social clubs’ floated as possible solution
An ACT parliamentary inquiry considered many of these issues while the legislation was still being drafted, and made a range of recommendations.
One was allowing cannabis ‘social clubs’ of up to 10 people to be formed, as a way of getting around some of the supply issues.
Social clubs would essentially allow users to pool their plants — growing plants together at one single property.
Membership would be restricted and registered, and plants would be grown on behalf of members, who could then access their cannabis free of charge.
Professor Lenton said, having surveyed the models in place around the world, social clubs appeared to offer the best legal middle ground.
He argued it provided an easy option for people unable or unwilling to grow their own plants.
“It’s a way of providing cannabis in a restricted market without the problems of widespread availability, rampant commercialisation and profit-driven advertising to people who are regular cannabis users,” he said.
“Rather than having them go to the illicit market.”
The ACT Government rejected the recommendation, suggesting it went beyond the intention of the legislation and would have made it difficult for police to distinguish between cannabis clubs and illegal grow houses.
Whether or not supply becomes a problem for users — and the ACT Government — will become apparent in just a matter of weeks when the legislation comes into effect.
A public information campaign is planned to roll out before the laws come into force, which might give some indication that the Government expects users to put the new laws into practice.
There is still one big unanswered question about Canberra's new cannabis laws — if supplying the drug remains illegal, how is anyone meant to acquire it?
Buying Marijuana Seeds in Australia 2020
Australia has experienced major changes in medical cannabis laws in recent years, with a growing push to legalize recreational cannabis in 2020. Recreational cannabis use is still considered a decriminalized drug, however, as of January 31st, 2020, recreational cannabis will be legalized, with Australia’s capital, Canberra, being the first jurisdiction to make the verdict. If you’re interested in learning more about legislation regarding buying cannabis seeds in Australia, as well as growing, using, and selling weed in the country, you’ve come to the right place.
This guide will hopefully serve as a useful reference for people traveling there as tourists or living as Australian residents. As cannabis laws are constantly changing throughout the world, it’s always a good idea to check local laws for any updates to ensure that you’re buying your marijuana seeds, as well as growing, possessing, and using your weed in a legal and safe manner.
Bergman’s Gold Leaf
Girl Scout Cookies
History on Growing, Using, Selling, and Buying Cannabis Seeds in Australia
Restrictions on buying cannabis seeds and other activities relating to cannabis date back to 1924 in Australia at the Geneva Convention on Opium and Other Drugs. The decriminalization of marijuana for recreational use was proposed in the 1970s.
This movement received support from the 1978 New South Wales Joint Parliamentary Committee on Drugs. However, no legal changes happened because of opposition from the 1979 Australian Royal Commission of Inquiry into Drugs, who stated that decriminalizing weed would conflict with the UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs.
Currently, Australia has a National Drug Strategy, which is its federal drug policy regarding criminal sanctions and favors harm minimization. Overall, Australia does not have a severe system for drug offenses; instead, the focus has been on reducing harm and using treatment strategies within the law enforcement system.
In recent years, the Greens party has worked to legalize the use of recreational marijuana in Australia, despite pushback from Greg Hunt, the country’s minister of health. Their efforts bear fruits, with Canberra, being the first city down under to legalize recreational cannabis in January of 2020! Residents over the age of 18 will be allowed to possess up to 50 grams of dried cannabis and even cultivate the plant, by allowing the growth of up to 2 plants per person or a total of 4 per household. The original proposal promised that citizens over 18 would be allowed to grow up to six cannabis plants for personal use. Taxes generated from all sales would fund drug education, as well as harm-reduction and treatment programs.
Cannabis is the most widely used illegal drug in Australia. In fact, the country has one of the highest cannabis usage rates in the world. Although marijuana will be legal in some cities or territories, it is still illegal on a federal level and the new law will be reviewed after 3 years.
Is Medical Cannabis Legal in Australia?
On February 24, 2016, the Australian parliament passed legislation approving medical marijuana use by people with chronic, severe health conditions. It also legalized the growing of cannabis for scientific purposes – an important step towards allowing for mandatory cannabis research. With optimal growing conditions, such as warm temperatures, humid climate and agricultural requirements, Australia was deemed an ideal place to grow medicinal marijuana on a large scale. However, extensive licensing is required to grow cannabis.
With this legislation, the Narcotic Drugs Act 1967 was amended to allow cannabis to be grown for the purpose of manufacturing medicinal weed products in the country. The update came after a suggestion proposed by Malcolm Turnball’s federal government and was supported by the main opposition party.
The use, production, manufacturing, and distribution of medical marijuana is legal at the federal level in Australia in 2020, provided that you meet a few stipulations. Under the new regulations, patients who have a valid prescription can use and possess medical cannabis grown in Australia. An additional requirement is that the weed must have been approved under the Therapeutic Goods Act and comply with laws in the relevant state and territory. A national regulator tracks medical weed products on behalf of the government from the growing stage to supply, and restrict any criminal activity.
Super Silver Haze
The change to the legislation of medicinal cannabis came one year after Daniel Haslam died, at just 25 years old, from bowel cancer. Daniel was an advocate for medicinal marijuana in New South Wales and received national attention in 2014 when his story of battling cancer and managing cancer treatments were made tolerable by the use of marijuana. He had used medical weed to get relief from the nausea and poor appetite that his chemotherapy induced, before he passed away in February of 2015. Following his death, his mother Lucy started a group called United in Compassion to petition for the legality of medical cannabis.
The Victorian government was the first state in Australia to create legal access to medical cannabis when it enacted the Victorian Access to Medical Cannabis Act 2016. Although it provided limited access, it restricted the eligible patient groups and specified the only products covered under the act would be Victorian-made. In 2018, Victoria lifted the restrictions on eligible patient groups, as well as canceling the plans for the cannabis-specific manufacturing license scheme originally laid out for Victoria.
New South Wales, which had notoriously strict laws in terms of cannabis criminalization, started allowing doctors to legally prescribe medical marijuana in 2016. While the approval process for patients was initially very slow, the New South Wales government made further improvements in 2018 that help provide better, more timely access to much-needed treatment.
Nimbin, the weed capital of Australia
Australian Legislation on Growing Cannabis
Medical cannabis laws and prohibitions in Australia affected buying cannabis seeds for medicinal purposes and there were no modifications to the laws on cultivating and smoking cannabis for recreational use for a long time. However, as of January 2020, Australia’s capital, Canberra, will allow the growth of marijuana for personal recreational use. The new law will allow 2 plants per person or up to 4 plants per household. Distribution of the weed you grow to the public will still be illegal and have legal consequences. Outside of the Australian Capital Territories, cannabis will still remain illegal, and categorized as a Schedule 9 Drug.
Regarding the penalties for cannabis laws, they differ by state and territory. South Australia (SA) is the most relaxed state when it comes to decriminalization of marijuana, as they were the first to institute those laws back in 1987. In South Australia, buying cannabis seeds and growing one non-hydroponic plant will result in a fine of $50-$150 with a 60-day period of payment.
Australian Capital Territory (ACT) is also pretty lenient when it comes to possession of marijuana. While ACT has decriminalized minor pot offenses, there are still penalties for possessing small amounts of marijuana, which will be relevant until the law change in the beginning of the new year. If you are found with two non-hydroponic plants in Northern Territory, you’ll face a $200 fine with a 28-day payment period, while the fine would only be $100 and a 60-day payment period for the exact same offense in the ACT. There is also the option to opt out of the fine, and instead, Aussie’s can attend a “drug assessment and treatment program”. Since the laws vary so much as you move through the various Australian states and territories, it’s a good idea to do a bit of research and understand what sort of fines you can be subjected to or potential repercussions you could be facing if you find cannabis seeds for sale, in an Australian seed bank or online, and decide to do a bit of recreational gardening in Australia.
Legal Guide: Buying Cannabis Seeds in Australia in 2020
Whether you’re an Australian resident or simply a traveler to the country, cannabis for recreational use is, on a federal level, still illegal today. However, you can buy cannabis seeds in Australia online, provided you choose a reputable source. Here are our top choices:
ILGM Seed Bank – A reputable breeder and seed bank, discreetly ships to Australia. They deliver when they say they will do so, and provide supreme-quality cannabis seeds, including shipping and germination guarantees. There are several ways to pay, from cash, credit cards, Bitcoin, or bank transfer.
MSNL Seedbank – The high quality of the cannabis seeds in Australia you purchase from MSNL Seedbank makes it one of the best around. Based in London, United Kingdom, marijuana-seeds.nl is known for reliably delivering juicy strains at low prices because they buy in bulk directly from Dutch producers. They pass the savings onto you! MSNL accepts Bitcoin (including other crypto-currencies), debit/credit cards, bank transfers, cash, and money orders as payment.
Be aware that buying cannabis seeds in Australia and then getting caught possessing, using, or selling cannabis is illegal as per the federal government, and will still be illegal outside of Canberra after January 2020. Always review the local laws where you live to ensure you understand the potential repercussions of non-compliance.
Possessing, Using, and Selling Marijuana: What Does Australian Law Say?
Thanks to the relentless persistence of citizens and groups working to change cannabis laws, growing and possessing cannabis for recreational purposes will be legal in some parts of Australia in 2020, starting with Canberra, the nation’s capital.
The criminal sanctions for possession and selling weed varies by state and territory. If you are in South Australia, for example, you will find the most relaxed penalties of any state in the country. Possession of up to 100 grams of dried weed and 20 grams of hash and owning smoking paraphernalia faces the same charges.
In ACT, with possession of 25 grams of weed intended for recreational use, you will be fined $100, with a mandatory payment within 60 days. This fine and legal repercussion will only be relevant until January 31st, 2020, when recreational marijuana use in ACT will be considered legal. If you are carrying 60 grams of marijuana or 10 grams of cannabis seeds or hash in the Northern Territory, the fine will be $200, with payment due within 28 days.
Are you going to New South Wales? You will get a caution for the possession of up to 15 grams of cannabis, and authorities allow two warnings before issuing a criminal penalty. Possessing 50 grams of pot in Queensland is a minor offense, and the penalty is participation in a drug assessment diversion program. The diversion programs set up in parts of Australia are meant to address the underlying causes of the drug issues and encourage offenders to take responsibility for their drug-related issues.
In Western Australia, you will face the strictest possession penalty in the whole country. If police catch you with 10 grams of marijuana, you will either get a $2,000 fine or two years of jail time. If you possess under 10 grams, you will receive a Cannabis Intervention Requirement (CIR) to attend mandatory one-on-one drug counseling.
In Victoria, if you are caught with a small quantity of cannabis (defined as 50 grams or less), you will only get a warning; there is a two-warning limit. Tasmania has a similar caution system, although the caution limit there is three times in 10 years.
Cannabis Culture in Australia
As per the Australian Drug Foundation, about 39% of Aussies who are 14 years and older have admitted to trying cannabis at least once in their lives. About 18% of these people have used cannabis within the past year. Typically, 17 was the initial age at which individuals dabbled in cannabis or began smoking at a regular basis.
In 2015, the year before the legalization of medical marijuana in Australia, a Roy Morgan poll was conducted, and its results indicated the overwhelming support by Aussies for legalizing medical cannabis. A staggering 91 percent majority voted in favor of the legalization of cannabis for chronically ill patients, with ailments such as cancer and epilepsy.
To grow cannabis seeds down under, the indoor seedlings can typically start in October. Then, after a few weeks, Aussies are welcoming their spring season. The marijuana plants can now be moved outdoors. Harvests typically begins in March and runs through May in regions with seasonal temperature changes.
In milder regions of Australia, cannabis seeds can grow any season of the year outdoors, giving growers up to four harvests in a single year. However, Australian outdoor growers are generally plagued by issues with the intense sun and the inability of the plants to handle scorching temperatures. The cannabis buds may also be susceptible to mold, which can ruin a harvest. With that being said, the general climate and soil conditions in Australia create an excellent environment in which to grow marijuana, if you are a professional who has many years of education and experience in the field.
Australian Legal Guide to Cannabis: Summing It All Up
As of 2020, buying cannabis seeds for recreational grow purposes in Australia, as well as the possession, use, and sale of recreational cannabis is still illegal under federal law. However, on January 31st, 2020, Australia’s capital, Canberra, will be the first to legalize recreational marijuana. Up to 50 grams of dried weed per person and a limit of 2 plants per person. Possessing, distributing and growing for the purpose of reselling will still be considered illegal activities and be punishable by the full extent of the law. The penalties for engaging in these marijuana activities, however, vary by state and even between different territories. The status of medical marijuana in Australia underwent a major change in 2016, positively impacting the Australian economy and quality of life patients for patients there.
If you’re thinking of buying marijuana seeds, possessing it, or using it in any way, always remember to always check the specific laws where you reside or travel in Australia to avoid criminal penalties.
Parent Page: Buy Cannabis Seeds
The legal state of buying marijuana seeds online in Australia as of 2020, Best online marijuana shops for buying marijuana seeds in Australia