Federal government responses on medicinal cannabis, CBD and Canada.

The Greens recently approached the federal government with a small question: “Changes in the use of cannabis as a stimulant, as well as for medical and commercial purposes.” Based on an extensive questionnaire on cannabis as a medicine, CBD and cannabis, as well as international developments in legalized countries, we have highlighted the most important of almost 30 questions and answers for you.

The amount of cannabis imported as the number of drugs increases.
According to BfArM, in the first quarter of 2017, about 125 kilograms of cannabis flowers were imported for medical care and about 77 kilograms of cannabis flowers for the production of dronabinol and cannabis-containing preparations. Compared to the first quarter of 2020, when about 1,777 kg of cannabis flowers were imported and about 551 kg for further processing, the volume of imports increased. The latest data for the second quarter of this year shows 2,349 kg of medicinal cannabis flowers and about 270 kg of flowers destined for further processing into dronabinol and cannabis preparations. Currently, 47 different grape varieties are imported from the Netherlands, Canada, Portugal and Denmark.

Cultivation in Germany is delayed.

What was already evident in the federal government’s responses to a minor FDP inquiry at the end of May is now confirmed: due to the corona pandemic, delays have occurred, so the supply of medicinal cannabis from German cultivation to the cannabis agency is delayed. The federal government is not giving a specific date, but the grower says there will be no harvest this year.

Fiction approval and approval ratings.

An incredible 40% of all applications for the supply of cannabis as a medicine under section 31 (6) SGB V have been rejected according to the National Association of Compulsory Health Insurance Funds since 2017. It is hard to imagine that with such a high failure rate, health insurance companies would only refuse to cover costs in justified exceptional cases. The federal government does not see the need for action here, as in the case of bogus approval. The Federal Social Court was weakened by the fiction of allegations to the detriment of patients in fundamental judgments, then the public association VdK announced a constitutional complaint.

Driver’s license.

The federal government also sees no need for action when it comes to handling cannabis on the road – neither for patients nor for entertainment. Patients can provide “proof of legality” with a copy of the BTM prescription and a certificate from their PCP, no problem from the government’s point of view. We feel that the opposite is true in our daily work. For everyone else who has lost their driver’s license due to cannabis, the federal government has nothing new in its luggage. The government simply refers to the decision of the Federal Administrative Court of April 2019, “According to which the casual cannabis user is likely to impair his ability to drive if a tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) concentration of 1 ng / ml or more is found in the serum of the person concerned, and the person concerned objects to the requirement to distinguish between consumption and violation of driving regulations.”
Cannabidiol is hotly debated with CBD, so it’s no surprise that, apart from the greens, the FDP also made a small request. Last year, the Federal Office for Consumer Protection and Food Safety (BVL) made only one request for advice on a product containing CBD under the New Food Regulation, according to the government. This was rejected as invalid for lack of documents. According to the EU Commission, there are currently 55 applications for approval of CBD as a new food product, which have yet to be decided. Interestingly, the federal government does not reject the question of whether the rejection of the WHO Expert Committee on Drug Dependence (ECDD) recommendation to remove CBD from international drug control should be understood as a doubt in the WHO committee’s expertise.

World events.

When asked about the findings from abroad that strict drug policies have little or no effect on consumer behavior, the federal government naturally disagrees: “The high proportion of people who never use illicit drugs speaks to the general preventive effect of threats of punishment from BtMG”

From the point of view of the government, the figures compiled by the Scientific Service of the Bundestag should be treated with caution:
“According to the conclusions of Wissenschaftlichen Dienst (WD), for these countries it remains to be seen whether these deviations are short-term or whether the corresponding legislative changes actually lead to long-term changes in consumer behavior. In addition, WD explains that, in addition to legislation, drug use is also influenced by other factors. In addition, due to the nature of the data collection, the comparability of the collected data may be insufficient, and their informative value may be questionable ”.

As for Canada, green wants to know.

What conclusions does the federal government draw from Statistics Canada data that cannabis consumption by young people and black market cannabis purchases have decreased as a result of controlled sales?

According to the Federal Bureau of Statistics of Canada, the number of young consumers aged 15-17 who have consumed cannabis in the last three months, from 19.8 percent before legalization (2018) to 10.4 percent after legalization (2019) refused. A decline that statisticians say should be judged with caution.

What will the federal government answer?

As of 2019, over 5.1 million people across Canada aged 15 and over said they had used cannabis in the three months leading up to the survey. This equates to 16.8 percent of Canadians. On average for 2018, that number was 14.9 percent, corresponding to 4.5 million Canadians, which is lower. With these numbers in mind, it is clear that cannabis use in Canada has increased during 2018 and 2019. Other information shows that consumption increased, in particular among people aged 25 and over (an increase from 13.1 percent to 15.5 percent) and among men (an increase from 17.5 percent to 20.3 percent).
The federal government cites the same source as the Greens, but does not say a word about how youth consumption has decreased rather than increased. Instead, she stresses that consumption has increased among people over 25. There is no answer to the question, the topic is skipped! During the discussion, one should not forget about one thing: cannabis is used in one way or another. Even if Union politicians constantly stress that they want to prevent the emergence of a third popular drug, it has been around for a long time. This is no longer about prevention, but about regulated treatment – and this can only be achieved with legalization!

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