NL: 51 applicants will be selected on Thursday for the controlled cannabis supply chain experiment

Thursday, December 3d of 2020, the selection for aspiring cannabis growers will take place in the Netherlands. These growers have filed an application to legally grow cannabis. 39 'lottery numbers' are in the running, from a total of 51 applicants. 

Some applicants have filed multiple requests with alternative locations. In the case of the applicant having the intention of starting more than one growing company, multiple numbers have been awarded. 

With the draw, the selection of cannabis growers in the Experiment gesloten coffeeshopketen (Experiment closed coffee shop chain, the so-called weed experiment) will be in its closing phase. 

The ten aspiring weed growers that will be chosen, will have to undergo an integrity check. If this process goes smoothly and no objections come forward, the growers could be formally addressed at the end of February, 2021, says the Ministry of Justice and Safety. 

Selection procedure
Between July 1 and 28, growers could file an application to be part of the Experiment closed coffeeshop chain. To do so, the growers had to fill in multiple documents: for instance, plans in which they explain how they want to grow, where and with which safety measures, and whether they'll have enough supply and quality. 

In the past months, the Ministry of Public Health, Wellbeing and Sports, assessed the 147 applications that had come in (the before-mentioned 149 was a counting error, due to double submitted applications). 

First of all, they checked to see if all the required documents were present and checked out. An evaluation of the plans by experts followed, who reviewed, among other things, if the grower would be capable of large-scale and professional production. In this thorough review, the advice of mayors of the proposed growing locations was also taken into account. 

96 applications have been denied (among which Project C, who want to fight this decision), and 51 applications have come through the screening. A total of 39 'tickets' are part of the selection. Some applicants have filed multiple applications with alternative locations. In the case that the applicant has the intention of starting in one of those locations, this applicant has one ticket. In case the applicant has the intention of starting multiple growing companies, more numbers have been granted. This explains why there's 39 lottery tickets from 51 applications. 

What follows
All applicants who continue will get a ticket to the lottery. The first ten chosen applicants will undergo a BIBOB-investigation (investigation on the ground of the Law for promotion of integrity assessments by public administration). Number 11 and next will go on a waiting list. 

When the BIBOB-investigation gives cause to a negative ruling, the next applicant on the waitinglist will get a BIBOB-investigation. There's a time limit from eight to twelve weeks for this integrity investigation. 

When the growers have been appointed, preparation time starts. The aim is a preparation period of 6 months. The exact term will depend on the circumstances of the 10 growing companies appointed. 

For the establisment of the growing companies, local procedures may possibly be necessary. At the end of February, the starting date of the next phase, a.k.a. the experimentation phase, will also be set. 

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