Thailand Plans To Build Its First Legal Weed Farm
Cannabis advocates in Thailand rejoiced on Tuesday as the news broke that marijuana will be grown legally for the first time in the country. Plans for Thailand’s first legal weed farm are centered in the Sakon Nakhon province and while nothing is set in stone just yet, the outlook is positive.
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Rattapon Sanrak, founder of a cannabis legalization advocate group called ‘Highland’ noted “I think it will certainly help build a positive image… Apart from image, it will help the patients. And if they can distribute it to farmers, instead of letting several corporations have monopoly, it will also help farmers to have more revenue.”
The news of the possible 800-hectare facility comes just months after drug authorities in Thailand confirmed plans to legalize cannabis for medical purposes. Officials have taken positive steps towards plans for the farm, although no time frame has yet been giving for the opening of the land.
It is unlikely that legal cannabis in Thailand will look as it does in the US. Farmer association chairman Prapat Panyachartraksa told the media that the facility’s crops would be harvested solely for medical research. He added that it is unlikely marijuana will be sold over-the-counter, dispensary style, but rather that the cannabis would be processed solely for compounds such as CBD in order to treat conditions such as epilepsy as well as facilitate cancer research studies.
Any unlicensed cultivation, use or sale of marijuana remains illegal, though in October anti-drug officials said they would move toward the partial decriminalization of cannabis for medical use.
Narcotics Control Board director Sirinya Sitdhichai could not immediately be reached for comment.
But the public health ministry – which would be responsible for facilitating studies using marijuana extracts – said it has only heard about the planned plantation in Sakon Nakhon from the media.
“We have never spoken about this,” spokeswoman Sirima Teerasak said. “The ministry is only doing work with the decriminalization of hemps. But there’s no information about marijuana.”
She said the Food and Drug Administration would hold a news conference about the matter later Tuesday afternoon.