Thailand has announced distributing one million cannabis plants to households across the country in the next month. The Thai government will be lifting legal restrictions on weed cultivation at home.
Public Health Minister of Thailand Anutin Charnvirakul announced the move on Facebook earlier this month, stating that he intended for cannabis plants to be grown like “household crops”.
Thailand’s one-third of the labour force is engaged in agriculture, and the country has been trying to promote cannabis as a cash crop for some time now.
In fact, in 2018, it became the first country in the Southeast Asian region to legalise cannabis for medical use. The plant-distribution project is set to start next month. It will allow the citizens to produce medical-grade marijuana for their use or consider it part of a small-scale commercial enterprise.
Large-scale businesses will still require government permits. “This will enable people and the government to generate more than 10 billion baht ($287,521,564.12) per year in revenue from marijuana and hemp,” Anutin wrote in his Facebook post.
With the new project, the Thai government seeks to encourage the cultivation of medicinal cannabis at home.
Officials hope with the new law, the country’s growing cannabis industry will slowly start to generate hundreds of millions of dollars each year and attract international visitors and strengthen medical tourism, which took a massive hit during the coronavirus pandemic.
The country’s new rule, enacted on June 9, will permit people to grow cannabis plants at home after informing their local government.
However, the cannabis cultivated at home must be of medical grade. Extracted contents will remain illegal if it contains more than 0.2 per cent of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which is the part of the plant responsible for getting people intoxicated.
Earlier this year, Thailand’s narcotics board announced plans to remove cannabis from its drugs list, starting the same week of June.