Buying Marijuana Seeds in United Kingdom 20202020 Laws on Using, Possessing, Growing, and Buying Cannabis Seeds in UK.
In 2016, voters in the United Kingdom approved a measure to leave the European Union and hot speculation began about the kinds of changes that were to come. A few years later, it’s still unclear exactly how Brexit, as it’s become known, will affect the UK – and how it will impact cannabis policy there, in particular.
Because we don’t know what changes the future holds, let’s discuss where current law stands for British seed banks and people who would like to possess/use marijuana or buy cannabis seeds in the UK. It’s always best to do a bit of research and read up on the current laws, but here’s an overview of the current situation there.
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Brexit: How Could It Affect Cannabis Laws in the UK?
In June 2016, 51.9% of voters in the UK approved a measure that would set in motion the potential withdrawal of the UK from the EU. Since the vote, it’s been unclear to what extent the country would “divorce” itself from the EU’s relationships and international agreements.
What is clear is that once the process was kicked into gear, it wasn’t going to be easily halted. The next step was to invoke Article 50 (which lets the EU know that after two years, all treaties are no longer applicable). After a bit of back and forth, in January 2017, the Supreme Court ruled that a parliamentary vote was required to kick off the invocation of Article 50. About a month later, the House of Commons did just that, and in March 2017, Prime Minister Teresa May signed the letter officially invoking Article 50. Brexit was supposed to officially begin two years from the date Article 50 was invoked, but it was extended to instead begin in 2020.
What does this mean for weed lovers who would like to partake as they travel there, or who live there and are interested in buying cannabis seeds to grow their own? Unfortunately, there won’t be a clear answer until Brexit actually takes place, but in 2020, indications aren’t good for those who favor marijuana legalization.
This is because up until Brexit is official, the UK is governed by EU equality laws. While the EU is not allowed to dictate individual members’ drug laws, it can influence their harshness, and the EU encourages a very non-punitive and tolerant approach when it comes to soft drugs. EU policies had an effect in Spain, for example, when the country attempted to restrict its cannabis clubs to residents only, and when the Netherlands passed a law to ban foreigners from their cannabis-selling coffee shops. In both cases, the EU declared that the restrictions were a breach of their equality laws and the countries reversed course.
If Brexit moves forward, the UK will no longer be subject to EU laws. This means that cannabis law in the UK will be set by its own officials and politicians. As almost no political parties in the UK are calling for the legalization of cannabis use, possession, as well as growing and buying cannabis seeds, this means that cannabis policy in the UK will likely become stagnant or move backwards. The Liberal Democrats are the only party calling for legalization, and they’re unlikely to have a significant impact as policy-makers.
Countries that remain within the EU, meanwhile, will still continue to enjoy the protection of their equality policies when it comes to drug laws.
Current Laws in the UK: The Use, Cultivation, and Sale of Cannabis
While the laws may potentially change or become harsher in the future, people planning to travel to the UK in 2020 should be aware of the current laws. Those who would like to use weed or buy cannabis seeds should do so very discreetly, because as of 1923, cannabis has been illegal in the United Kingdom. That was when cannabis prohibition was added to the Dangerous Drugs Act of 1920. Then, in 1971, the Misuse of Drugs Act was passed. This act redefined the drug classification, creating a system of A, B, C classes. Cannabis was deemed a Class B drug, putting it in the same category as amphetamines. The associated criminal sanctions were less than Class A, which included LSD. This differs from the United States, which classifies cannabis at the same level as harder drugs such as cocaine and heroin.
With the passing of the Misuse of Drugs Act, the maximum penalties for cannabis increased, rather than being decreased. The Misuse Act also created two new offenses that weren’t part of the system before: the offense of supplying and possession with intent to supply. For those who buy marijuana seeds in the UK, cultivate them, and sell the product, the maximum sentence is 14 years in jail and/or unlimited fines – a pretty significant penalty for selling weed.
As of 2020, the only way a person can legally grow cannabis seeds in the United Kingdom is if he or she has a license from the Home Office. Licenses cost £580 to obtain, and you must complete a criminal records check as well as meet certain guidelines. People who are licensed can grow low-THC varieties of cannabis (such as industrial hemp) or can grow the plant for research or other special purposes.
Arrests for unlicensed cultivation, use, and sales of marijuana jumped since 1945, when there were only four arrests, and 1973, a year with more than 14,000 arrests in the United Kingdom. Fast forward to 1994, and the number of cannabis arrests grew substantially to be 72,392.
Today, in 2020, cannabis supporters are pushing to reclassify cannabis into Class C, which is the classification for drugs that are less risky than the ones in Class B. Cannabis educators and activists have been requesting this change for a long time; it was first proposed by the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs in 1979.
In the meantime, an adult (18 years and older) charged with growing, using, possessing, or selling cannabis in the UK in 2020 can have their property or money confiscated as per the Drug Trafficking Offenses Act. The law encourages financial institutions to inform the government about clients they suspect may be dealing. In some situations, reporting this information is a requirement by law.
If an individual is caught selling cannabis, whether they buy cannabis seeds in the UK and grow them for distribution or acquire their weed from a third party before selling it, several factors will be taken into consideration when computing their sentence. Considerations include their criminal history, amount of involvement in the operation, and the size of the supply.
Laws on Possessing & Buying Cannabis Seeds in the United Kingdom
Possessing and buying cannabis seeds in the UK is perfectly legal, whether the seeds are hemp (low THC) or high-THC strains. Hemp oil and fiber is also legal. However, the same cannot be said of the possession of cannabis and possession of cannabis with the intention to sell; both of these offenses are illegal in the United Kingdom.
For possession of marijuana, provided you are 18+ years of age, the police have the authority to issue a warning for a first-time offender. The written warning will not appear on Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) checks by employers or show on the Police National Computer (PNC).
If it’s your second offense for possessing cannabis, expect to receive a Penalty Notice of Disorder. In this instance, you will be immediately subject to an £80 fine. You must pay the fine within 14 days; failure to do so will result in a mandatory court appearance. For your third offense, you will be arrested and are subject to a court-imposed sentence and will potentially end up with the offense on your criminal record.
The maximum drug penalty for possessing a Class B Drug such as cannabis is getting arrested and given five years in prison, an unlimited fine, or both. The police also have the option to act in accordance with the first- and second-offense sanctions outlined in the last two paragraphs. Most of the time, people who get caught with a small amount of cannabis or buy cannabis seeds in the UK and are caught with a plant or two but aren’t going to be subject to the maximum sentence for cannabis possession. Even repeat cannabis offenders typically get short prison sentences.
Be aware that the police in the UK do not have the right to randomly stop and search you. If an officer stops you and wants to search you or your premises, always ask the grounds for doing so. They must have search power and your consent to the search before entry.
As it’s legal to buy cannabis seeds in the UK in 2020, some people choose to do so locally. Of course, people don’t only buy them in person. Often, they choose to buy cannabis seeds online, as it’s convenient and many strains are available from seed banks that ship to the UK.. However, to get the best weed seeds, using a reputable web-based shop is ideal.
We recommend these leading providers for buying cannabis seeds in the United Kingdom:
1. MSNL: For high quality, popular strains, the UK seed bank MSNL has made quite a name for itself. The cannabis seeds are well-priced, ship internationally from its base in London, and they have stealthy delivery to maintain your privacy. Customer service is fantastic and email replies are prompt. MSNL carries all of the most popular strains, and payment is by Bitcoin (and other crypto-currencies), credit card, bank transfer, cash, or money order. No wonder they are a go-to weed provider for many people!
2. WeedSeedsExpress: In the second spot is WeedSeedsExpress, which is a newer, Netherlands-based online seed bank that’s already building a great reputation for its high-quality seeds and dedication to taking good care of their customers. WeedSeedsExpress ships to the United Kingdom and is based in the Netherlands. WeedSeedsExpress accepts Bitcoin, Credit Cards, bank transfers, and cash.
Current legality of buying from seed banks in the UK
Please note that it is advisable when buying anything cannabis-related in the UK that you check the current local laws, as legislation changes often and may vary, depending where you reside or travel. It is currently legal for United Kingdom residents to buy from UK seed banks, and legal to possess cannabis seeds of all strains. But it is still illegal to grow your own marijuana plants from the seeds.
Medical Marijuana in the UK
Medical cannabis is problematic in that it’s only available in synthetic or pharmaceutical forms. Patients can get a prescription for a synthetic cannabinoid called Nabilone to use for neuropathic pain.
Beyond that, the only option for medical marijuana is a drug produced by a company called GW Pharmaceuticals. They grow, on average, 20 tons a year of cannabis each year and turn it into a drug called Sativex. While Sativex is available across the EU, it’s so costly that many areas of the UK do not stock it.
Unfortunately, patients have no other legal medicinal method than Sativex or Epidyolex, a CBD medication for epilepsy and seizure disorders. . As a temporary solution, some patients ask their doctors to prescribe them cannabis when they go to other European countries, such as the Netherlands. This is problematic when they return home, however, because the Home Office does not allow UK residents to enter the country with medical marijuana they got from somewhere else.
Cannabis Culture in the UK: Movement for Legal Reform
Since 2015, there has been a strong call amongst citizens of the UK for amendments to laws governing the possession and use of marijuana, as well as buying cannabis seeds in order to grow high-THC plants. In October 2015, for example, James Richard Owen started an online petition to legalize the use, production, and sale of marijuana there, and the petition even went before Parliament. While the petition was ultimately struck down by the government, it reached 236,995 signatures – which shows it had huge support by UK residents.
About half of the UK currently support cannabis legislative reform (legalization or decriminalization of cannabis possession), according to a 2013 Ipsos poll. In 2020, policy changes regarding marijuana remain a popular topic of public debate. There are many supporters joining United Kingdom Cannabis Social Clubs, a group that is working to grow support for marijuana legalization from one end of the UK to the other.
As per the UK government, legalization would send a negative message to people who are not drug users and who are at risk. However, Parliament is not considering that cannabis has the potential to significantly increase tax revenues the way it has done in U.S. states like Colorado. According to one source, the sale of cannabis in UK shops could generate £1 billion a year in tax revenue! However, the government claims that in spite of this financial opportunity, the cost of police forces, health services, and related administrative costs would not make legalization worth it.
The Future of Cannabis: Will Cannabis Culture Help Change UK Legislation?
It’s likely that current campaigns for the legalization of weed in the UK are only just beginning. A person need only look at the establishment of the political party CISTA (Cannabis is Safer than Alcohol) to realize that cannabis culture is growing strong. The CISTA Manifesto insists that it’s time for a new, evidence-based political campaigning movement that goes across political parties and draws from successful drug reform campaigns around the world.
This Manifesto explains that the way the UK has handled cannabis-related legislation goes against the approaches of the rest of the world and due to this, the UK risks being left behind. CISTA aims to create support for drug reform, beginning with cannabis, by educating the public about the available evidence regarding cannabis legalization. They draw on examples from many parts of the world, from Portugal to Australia, where deregulation and new cannabis policies have benefited the countries.
In other words, the UK is falling behind in its public policies toward marijuana. In addition, one might argue that the government is failing in its duty to protect the people of the UK. It fails to do so by not having any standards of control over the drugs that are being widely distributed by people associated with organized crime. As a result, people have access to weed that is not being governed by any standards, putting citizens’ health at risk. Add to this the fact that when law enforcement is focused on arresting and jailing people for buying cannabis seeds in the UK and growing them or carrying weed around with them, they’re wasting resources that would be better used going after criminals.
Concluding Thoughts on Cannabis Laws in the United Kingdom
While it sounds like a cannabis connoisseur’s dream to be able to freely use pot, as well as buy marijuana seeds and legally grow a beautiful little garden, it doesn’t look like these kind of changes will be happening in the UK in 2020. Looking ahead, it appears that activists will have to continue to raise awareness and educate the public in order to eliminate the stigma associated with marijuana and change the current laws.
With cannabis advocates continuing to make residents and the government more aware of the benefits of legalizing marijuana in 2020, including taking it out of the hands of organized criminals and creating tax revenue, the process is likely to lead to legal reform eventually. Of course, the politicians in Parliament will still have to be in favor of change and willing to shift their views to reflect those of other western countries. With Brexit moving forward, this change will be slow, but to look at the rest of the world, it seems inevitable.
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