Updated: Sep 30, 2022
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The continent of South America is renowned for its breathtaking scenery, delightfully pleasant climate, and its fierce wars against hard drugs. The majority of the continent's attitude toward cannabis use is so unexpectedly lenient. Countries like Argentina have made the use of medical cannabis legal. Argentina was the first nation to offer free medical cannabis to patients.
Steaks, beautiful wines, legendary footballers, Pope Francis, and an economic crisis that seems to never end are all well-known for Argentina. Argentina was the second nation in The Americas to legalize gay marriage over ten years ago, and close to 50% of Argentines supported the legalization of abortion in 2020, which is impressive for a nation in South America and a culture where nearly 80% of people identify as Catholic. Argentina is also the second-largest country in South America and arguably the most liberal in terms of social policy.
Argentina is equally tolerant when it comes to cannabis, and since 2021 registered individuals have been able to cultivate and possess the drug. As of late, the nation has also legalized the purchase of cannabis seeds, providing the buyer satisfies the conditions of the National Cannabis Registry and the National Seed Institute. To understand more about weed that is legal in Argentina, keep reading.
2022 was the year everything changed.
In Argentina's legal cannabis market, 2022 marked a significant change. The National Cannabis Registry is now fully operational, and a small number of licensed cannabis seeds are now available for purchase. The nation is starting to embrace a green revolution. It wasn't always this, though, as the first significant moves toward the legalization of cannabis were done more than two years ago.
For Argentine cannabis users, 2020 marked the start of significant changes. A draught of significant regulatory amendments to the country's medicinal cannabis statute, bill 27.350, was published by the government on July 15th. The proposed framework for the public production and sale of medicinal cannabis products, as well as free public access to cannabis-based medicines, were among the lofty goals expressed in the draught. Registered patients also can produce their cannabis at home. Soon after, the government began implementing at least some of these suggested adjustments.
After a year, REPROCANN, Argentina's new national cannabis registry, allowed individuals, health care professionals, and non-governmental organizations to sign up (Registro Nacional del Programa de Cannabis). Cannabis can be grown, owned, and consumed lawfully by anyone or any group that has registered with the program. In Argentina, there are essentially three main ways to access REPROCANN;
- As an individual who grows cannabis for personal use. In this situation, you must be examined by a medical expert who will submit a request on your behalf to be permitted to cultivate, possess, and use cannabis for medical purposes.
- As someone who grows cannabis for another officially recognized patient.
- As an NGO that raises cannabis for its patients
Buying cannabis seeds legally in Argentina
Legalizing cannabis use and cultivation is a big step in the right direction, but where can people buy seeds? According to a recent development, it is now legal in Argentina to sell cannabis seeds, thus theoretically anyone who resides there can do so without presenting any identification.
Now, we say "in theory" because unless people have registered with the aforementioned cannabis registry, possessing and growing cannabis seeds remains a crime (REPROCANN).
The types of seeds you can purchase also present a little bit of a challenge since they need to be registered with INASE (the National Seed Institute), and the registration only lasts for a year before it needs to be renewed. The good news is that the Argentinian cannabis market is open to high-THC, High-CBD, and everything in between because the law does not stipulate the cannabinoid concentration of seeds.
There are already four cannabis strains that have been approved, and 77 more are being considered. Fortunately, grow shops will also be covered by these laws, and they will just need to comply with a few minimal conditions to sell the authorized seed varieties. With the elimination of the need to import seeds from overseas, the switch to purchasing cannabis seeds also represents a significant advancement for medical programs and research.
How Does Argentina’s Cannabis Program (REPROCANN) Work?
Argentina's medicinal cannabis policy differs significantly from other medical cannabis programs in operation around the world in numerous ways. Most notably, REPROCANN in Argentina does not provide a list of prerequisites.
Instead, any cannabis use that patients deem therapeutic can be registered. This stands in stark contrast to other medical cannabis programs, such as those in operation in several US states, which only take patients with serious conditions like cancer, epilepsy, HIV/AIDS, or PTSD, for example, into account. In their REPROCANN applications, Argentine patients frequently list the following cannabis-related therapeutic uses:
- Sleep improvements
- Relief from generalized anxiety and stress
- Improved appetite
- Mild pain management
Additionally, REPROCANN in Argentina permits patients to own and cultivate copious amounts of cannabis. For instance, REPROCANN members are permitted to cultivate nine flowering plants and an unlimited number of vegetative plants both inside (in a grow area no larger than 6m2) and outside (in a space no larger than 15m2).
Additionally, people are allowed to have up to 6 30ml bottles of cannabis tincture or extract or up to 40g of dried cannabis flowers in public. Additionally, there is no restriction on how much cannabis a patient may keep at home. A recognized NGO, on the other hand, is only allowed to cultivate a maximum of 150 registered patients and up to 9 plants per patient.
As we've already mentioned, REPROCANN does not distinguish between the varieties of cannabis that a patient may own or grow. All cannabis strains and types, including high CBD and high THC strains, are therefore acceptable.
What other benefits are there to REPROCANN in Argentina?
Besides being able to grow and possess cannabis legally, REPROCANN patients can also:
• Transport cannabis on flights or other modes of transport across Argentina.
• Demand legal consequences should their plants, flower, or tinctures get stolen.
• Get prescriptions for cannabis or cannabis derivatives from public health professionals.
What Are the Downfalls of Argentina’s REPROCANN?
Argentina's REPROCANN has received a great deal of criticism, like the majority of legal cannabis frameworks. It doesn't fully legalize or decriminalize cannabis for everyone; it only addresses its therapeutic usage. Cannabis remains still illegal in Argentina, therefore if you are seen in public with plants or anything else a police officer deems to be "a considerable amount" of cannabis, you may be detained and given a court date.
The fact that the REPROCANN program in Argentina doesn't explicitly address the legality of owning and using cannabis extracts like hash and edibles is another popular complaint about the program. REPROCANN does not impose any limitations on how patients may take cannabis, although its regulations only ever refer to cannabis plants, dried flowers, or liquid tinctures.
Last but not least, and perhaps one of the largest criticisms of REPROCANN in Argentina, is that law enforcement is not aware of the program and the legal rights it provides patients. To this day, law enforcement officers who are not fully informed about the programme and its scope detain or arrest registered REPROCANN patients for transporting or producing cannabis.