The Dutch government experiment with legally grown cannabis has been postponed again. The Ministry of Health expects the cannabis trial to begin only in the second quarter of next year. Earlier the second half of 2022 had been mentioned.
The ministry says the postponement is necessary because only next year "it is expected that the quantity, quality and diversity" of the legally grown cannabis will be sufficient to supply the participating coffee shops.
Of the ten targeted growers who are to cultivate the cannabis, only eight have yet been designated. The Ministry writes to the Lower House that selecting the growers "is taking longer than expected and a number of growers are having problems obtaining the location." Some growers are also having problems opening bank accounts because banks consider it contrary to their duty to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing. Solutions are being sought with the Ministry of Finance and the Dutch Central Bank, among others, according to the letter.
If all preparations are actually completed in the second quarter of 2023, the "transition phase" can begin. This will last six weeks. The coffeeshops are then also allowed to sell illegal cannabis. After that, they may only sell the legally grown cannabis for four years.