The Czech Republic is one of the most liberal countries in Europe, if not the world, when it comes to cannabis legislation. And while this has been the case for over a decade, the Central European nation continues to spearhead liberal marijuana policies in the region.
This article lists seven things about marijuana use in the Czech Republic.
1. Recreational Use Of Cannabis Is Illegal In The Czech Republic
While you won’t get into serious trouble from consuming marijuana in the Czech Republic, recreational use is still technically illegal. The country decriminalized marijuana possession in 2010, joining other European countries, such as Italy, Germany, and Spain, as nations that don’t prosecute small amounts of marijuana possession.
The Czech law considers a “small amount” as 15 grams of cannabis and five grams of hashish. Possession of marijuana over 15 grams is, technically, a crime unless you’re using it for medical purposes.
It’s unknown whether the same law would apply to concentrates when it becomes available. Hence, it’s best to tread with caution if you have dabbing sessions to enjoy the high tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content. Try cleaning your rig after this much dabbing.
2. Cannabis Legalization Is On The Way
The Czech Republic appears set to follow in Germany’s footsteps, which intends to legalize recreational cannabis use among adults in 2024. The Czech coalition is in the process of drafting a bill to regulate the marijuana industry, with full legalization similarly eyed for 2024.
In September 2022, Czech drug commissioner Jindřich Vobořil was tasked to draft a law legalizing cannabis use among adults. According to Vobořil, his team is working closely with the German government to coordinate their efforts toward marijuana legalization.
3. Cannabis To Be Sold In Pharmacies And Dispensaries Following Legalization
Vobořil told a local media outlet that once legalized, cannabis would be sold in authorized pharmacies and licensed dispensaries. He added that the government intends to leave the decision to allow or ban cannabis stores to Czech municipalities when it hopefully becomes legal in 2024.
4. Legal Marijuana But No Smoking?
In a separate interview, Vobořil said he would try to limit the consumption of marijuana through conventional smoking, as he believes this has the most health downside. While it’s unclear how that would be possible, it might signal a push to other cannabis products, such as vaporizers and edibles.
5. In 2021, Czech Doctors Prescribed 100 Kilos Of Medical Marijuana
Nearly 200 doctors prescribed medical marijuana to around 4,400 patients in the Czech Republic. The number marked a massive jump from the 450 patients who received medical marijuana prescriptions in 2018. Additionally, health insurance companies have covered up to 90% of the costs of medical marijuana in the Czech Republic.
Medical marijuana patients can be prescribed up to 30 grams of medical cannabis per month and up to 180 grams for more severe conditions. Patients receive medical marijuana prescriptions for chronic pain, nausea, and mental health conditions.
In January 2022, the Czech government relaxed its medical marijuana law, tripling the allowed THC content in technical cannabis and its derived products. According to a report by the Czech News Agency, the treatments helped improve the condition of patients in 69% of the cases studied.
6. 23% Of Young Czechs Have Tried Marijuana
According to a European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) report, 23% of Czechs aged 15 to 34 have tried cannabis at least once. This ranks first among the 24 European Union states. The percentage is also on par with the US.
Moreover, the same source estimates that 30% of EU citizens aged 15 to 64 have tried at least one illicit substance, with 79 million having tried marijuana. Interestingly, 5% of Czechs aged 15 to 34 consumed hallucinogenic mushrooms in 2021.
7. You Could Buy Up To 100 Grams Of Cannabis Once Legalized
According to European Pirate Party Chairperson Mikuláš Peksa, consumers can purchase up to 100 grams of cannabis once legalization pushes through. Peksa also notes that there’s a possibility there will also be a cap on the number of companies allowed to operate in the adult-use cannabis industry in the Czech Republic.
The European Pirate Party estimates the legal weed market to bring around EUR€75.4 million in revenue to the government and savings of about EUR€25 million in law enforcement expenditures.
While it remains to be seen what the legal cannabis industry in the Czech Republic will look like, it appears that its passing is inevitable. As one of the most liberal countries regarding cannabis legalization, it won’t be too long before other countries will look at the Czech Republic as a model for legal recreational and medical marijuana use.