The European Monitoring Center for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) report “Cannabis – State of Europe (European Drug Report 2023)” describes cannabis as “the most commonly consumed illicit drug in Europe”. there is
of report cites a national survey showing that 8% of European adults (out of about 22.6 million people aged 15 to 64) have used cannabis within the past year. An estimated 1.3% of his adult population (about 3.7 million) are said to be “daily” or “almost daily” consumers.
As cannabis continues to grow in popularity, this often poses a “problem” for consumers, the report said. “However, there remains a need for a better understanding of the types of problems experienced by cannabis users and the referral channels and treatment options available to those with cannabis-related problems.” written report.
In the report 2021 European Medicines Web Survey95% of participants who have used cannabis within the past 12 months chose to consume the “resin”, 25% chose the edible and 17% preferred the extract. In the European Union (EU), the resins tested contained 20% THC, while the flowers were tested for 9.5% THC.
of EMCDDA In 2021, it claims 97,000 people will enter drug treatment programs for “problems related to cannabis use,” with 55,000 of them joining for the first time.
In addition, 2021 seizures of cannabis products also reached their highest level in more than a decade. The report lists Spain as the country with the highest seizure rate for cannabis products at 66%.
Overall, the EU is reported to have seized more than 202,000 cannabis resin products in 2021, representing a seizure of 816 tonnes, or equivalent to £1,798,972. The seizure of cannabis flower was recorded at 256 tons (or 564,383 pounds). In the country of Turkey alone, 9,800 seizures of cannabis resin products yielded 33 tons (or 72,752 pounds) and 31 tons (or 68,343 pounds) of cannabis flowers.
“There is an ever-increasing diversity of cannabis products available in Europe. Products are coming,” writes EMCDDA. “In the illicit drug market, the availability of high-potency extracts and edibles is of particular concern and is associated with acute toxicity manifestations in hospital emergency departments.”
The report also noted concerns over the synthetic cannabinoid hexahydrocannabinol, which has recently become available in some EU countries.
The EU is made up of 27 countries, some of which have enacted medical or recreational cannabis legalization to prevent the black market from flourishing.
In December 2021, Malta became the first EU country to legalize recreational cannabis. In Malta, a national initiative to regulate possession, cultivation and sale allows residents to possess up to 7 grams of cannabis in public (up to 50 grams in private homes) and cannabis grown at home. Up to 4 plants are allowed.
Recently, German authorities have been working hard to develop a regulatory framework for cannabis legalization. The April 2023 updated draft reflects the use of state-controlled non-profit social clubs. If passed, the bill would allow residents at least 18 years old to buy up to 25 grams of cannabis per day (or up to 50 grams per month). People aged 18-21 are limited to 30 grams per month.
Other EU countries such as Luxembourg, the Czech Republic and the Netherlands are also currently working on their own legalizations.
Meanwhile, Switzerland currently allows a number of cannabis research pilot programs in certain regions of the country. The SCRIPT study, conducted by the University of Bern, does not legalize cannabis, but was set up to investigate the “health and social impacts” of regulated cannabis in local pharmacies. “Thus, our research was not aimed at legalizing cannabis on the free market, but rather addressed problems posed by prohibition and the black market, and explored possible harm mitigation approaches, and the use of supply and distribution. The aim is to be able to test tight control over demand “for cannabis,” said SCRIPT Research Director Reto Auer.