When you think of countries that have legalized marijuana, Switzerland may not be on the top of your list. However, it is one of the newest – and hottest. Whether you are looking to invest monetarily, or invest in growing the green, this tiny European country could be your newest friend.
In 2011, Switzerland legalized cannabis containing up to one percent tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) – higher than the 0.2 percent legal limit in many other European countries.
The low level of THC means this legal Swiss cannabis won’t make you high, but it does still contain cannabidiol (CBD), thought to have certain health benefits making it useful for treating pain, inflammation and panic attacks.
To comply with European law, manufacturers have to make sure their CBD products are not marketed as medicines. Last year, the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) ruled that any product containing CBD marketed as a medicine must have a licence before it can be sold.
Growing interest in products containing cannabis extract comes at a time of changing laws around marijuana use. Several European countries have relaxed their laws, including the Netherlands, Spain and Portugal have formally legalized recreational use of the drug. Many other countries, including Germany, now allow the drug to be used for medicinal reasons.
Such changes in legislation have also prompted scientists to call for a safer way to produce cannabis. One suggestion is to boost levels of CBD so users can get their hit while lessening the potential risks from THC.