Legalization of recreational cannabis in Germany

Reading Time 6 minutes
German flag with a zip unzipping and a person smoking a joint of marijuana
German flag with a zip unzipping and a person smoking a joint of marijuana


The newly formed government coalition in Germany has approved the recreational use of marijuana for adults, making it the first major country in the European Union to legalize the production, sale and consumption of this plant.

2022 begins by opening a new door to hope for cannabis users, and we are sure that this will not be the only good news of the year, because the German country is the mirror in which other European states look at each other, so we think that the rest of the continent will soon follow this path. If you want to find out all the details surrounding this news, I invite you to read the following article, rest assured that it will not take you more than 5 minutes.



⭐ Why has the cannabis law changed in Germany?



There are several reasons that motivated this decision, but undoubtedly the most important is that they realized the failure of the ban, which not only did not end with the consumption of this substance, on the contrary, it is consumed more than ever and the the fact that it is prohibited has only accentuated all the problems related to its use, especially those related to safe consumption.

Another reason is the recent change of government in Germany and the success of the green party in the last elections, which among other things has made the condition for supporting the new coalition recreational legalization of marijuana a. The other two parties that make up this government (Social Democrats and Liberals) have shown an open position in this regard, and have even proposed expanding the model.

There is a third cause which, although not so important for the Germans, also had a lot of weight in this decision, which is the economic part, since it generates a new industry, new taxes, and a net saving of the resources invested in the control of a hitherto banned substance.



⛳ ¿Cómo será la legalización de la marihuana en Alemania?


In principle, it will be similar to the legalization of Canada and some states of the United States, that is, the administration of the country itself will be in charge of providing the product to consumers through licensed dispensaries that are enabled for this. Both marijuana buds and hashish and other products derived from this plant, edibles, creams, drinks, etc. will be sold.

Only Legal age will be able to buy these products people of, and a maximum daily amount per person or day has not yet been specified, but in the first proposal of the greens there was talk of the possibility of buying or possessing up to 30 grams of marijuana per person.

In the words of the government itself, legalization will improve consumer access to a safe product. “We are introducing the controlled distribution of cannabis to adults for consumption in licensed stores. This will make it possible to control quality, prevent the transfer of contaminated substances and ensure the protection of minors. We will evaluate the law after four years to determine its social impact “.



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✨ The legalization of cannabis in Germany in numbers


Marijuana moves a lot of money,directly and indirectly, and in a context of illegality this economy goes directly to the mafia who use this money to finance any kind of illegal activity. This is no secret discovered by Germany, it has been known around the world for a long time, but it seems that there are some hidden interests upholding its ban.

The German Treasury expects to come in around 4.7 billion euros a year with the approval of this measure. This amount includes direct taxes relating to the sale in the authorized factories, which are estimated to reach 1,800 million. Another income would come from the approximately 27,000 new employment contracts necessary for the cultivation, processing and sale of this product, which would mean an additional 526 million euros. Finally, we must include the savings that the legalization of this drug brings to the public purse, that is the persecution of the police, and the judicial and prison costs of adhering to the ban, which are estimated at around 1,400 million euros.

A large part of this income will go to the treatment of addictions, both cannabis and other hard drugs, which they already do in some states of the USA with excellent results.



🚀 German authorities against the black market of cannabis


It is estimated that the price of legal cannabis in the Teutonic country can fluctuate between € 10 and € 14 per gram of bud, as they intend to grow most of the production within their borders, with an estimated cost of € 1 to € 2 per gram. One of the weaknesses of the law is the strong collection of the state, which wants to collect € 4 in direct taxes for every gram of gem sold, € 5 for each gram of hashish, and € 6 for each gram of oil, something that goes in return. the most expensive final product. Finally, they calculated the profit of the dispensaries at 3 euros per gram sold, to which must be added the 19% VAT that goes to the state coffers.

The problem is that at the moment the average price of marijuana on the German black market is between 8 and 10 euros, and the authorities think that a high price of legal cannabis could limit their access, and that many users continue to resort to the illegal market.



✅ Drug checking and the consumption-related harm reduction policy


With this step taken by the German authorities, the use of cannabis is equated with the use of tobacco or alcohol, 2 drugs fully accepted by society and heavily taxed. In this sense , the marijuana user can be separated from the one who uses stronger prohibited substances, which they have been doing in the Netherlands for several decades.

One of the most interesting proposals of the new German government coalition on drug use is the program called “Drug Checking” which allows users of hard drugs to analyze the purity of substances they buy on the street in order to detect contaminants or impurities.

Another interesting point of the new German law is the reduction of advertising for alcoholic beverages, tobacco and now also for cannabis. This will limit the sponsorship of some brands as can be seen on television today, with the intent of reducing access for new consumers.



🎯 German marijuana users celebrate their legalization


In 2018, the German economist Justus Haucap calculated that in the German country there are more than 4.5 million marijuana users, who consume about 500 tons of this substance every year, evidently from the black market. Subsequently the so-called “THC report” estimated that these calculations were too short, and they calculated that it is about 800 tons per year.

What is clear is that to cover the drug market alone, Germany needs around 20 tonnes of marijuana every year, and these users represent only a small percentage of the total. Some of these German consumers travel to the Netherlands several times a year in search of a space that allows them to buy and consume marijuana legally, and now they can do so without having to leave their hometown.



🧐 Conditions for obtaining a license to open a dedicated establishment for the sale of legal cannabis in Germany


Although the specific conditions have not yet been specified, it is assumed that in some respects the proposal that the Greens published at the time, which is based on the following points:


  • Presentation of the certificate of good conduct
  • Legally registered activity
  • Purchase only from officially authorized companies
  • Minimum distance from schools and youth welfare institutions (distance would be a matter for each local state)
  • No advertising for companies
  • Access controls with proof of age
  • The creation and presentation of a social concept that establishes measures for the prevention of addictions and the protection of minors
  • All cannabis products must be stored in a safe or specially protected place
  • Maximum sale of 30 grams per person ( possibly significantly less)
  • Training special for commercial staff: all commercials must have a certificate and renew it every two years to obtain it, for example, they must attend a training course at the state or a specialized agency for addiction prevention and prove that they have knowledge of how to deal with cannabis, the modes of action and dangers of cannabis, as well as the prevention of cannabis addiction and the early detection of risky and subsequent patterns of use. The referral of interested parties to addiction counseling or therapeutic structures has been acquired.


The zoning or minimum distance between establishments dedicated to the sale of cannabis has not yet been determined and, as with other measures, it is assumed that it will be the decision of each municipality.

Infographic on the legalisation of marijuana in Germany
Infographic on the legalisation of marijuana in Germany



👾 Conclusi0n


Germany is not the first country in Europe to legalize or decriminalize the recreational use of marijuana, as Malta, Luxembourg and the Netherlands previously did. But it is the first country of the great Europeans to do so, and we are sure that other great states of this continent will soon follow, perhaps not so much to grant us rights, it will certainly be for economic reasons, but to be sure that it is good for everyone.


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Fran Quesada Moya
Fran Quesada Moya

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