Exhibition ‘Cannabis Cuisine’ at Hash Museum Amsterdam

Everyone knows you can eat cannabis. Space cake from Amsterdam coffeeshops is world-famous, but did you know life expectancy of residents in the Chinese town of Bama Yao is well above 100? Scientists believe the secret behind this long lifespan has something to do with their diet, which contains a lot of hemp seeds.

Although the cannabis sativa is mainly known for its flowers, which can be smoked, it is also proving to be a versatile source of nutrition. Nowadays, hemp seeds are available at any supermarket and in recent years, CBD oil has been on the rise as a nutritional supplement. In the exhibition Cannabis Cuisine (1 December 2017 – 25 February 2018), the Hash Marihuana & Hemp Museum in Amsterdam explores the history of cannabis in nutrition, lists the healthy qualities of hemp and follows the latest trends in high cuisine.

Address: Oudezijds Achterburgwal 130, Amsterdam

Cars and Cannabis

Since July of this year Dutch police have been using a new saliva test to target cannabis users in traffic. This test is the first of its kind to be implemented in the Netherlands.

Cannabis remains active in the body for only four hours, but after 14 hours it’s still possible to test positive in a field sobriety examination. The consequences can be substantial. In the worst case scenario, you can lose your driving license for a year and a half.

To inform the public about these new developments, a group of Dutch coffeeshops have launched a campaign, not so much intended to warn about using cannabis while driving, but more about the consequences of this test. All coffeeshops in the Netherlands have received flyers and posters explaining the current sutuation

New Government Won’t Legalize Weed, But Is Willing To Experiment

After decades of discussion about the cannabis tolerance policy, the next cabinet plans an experiment with government-regulated cultivation of weed and hash.

Six to ten Dutch towns and cities may participate in the test. The coffeeshops in those municipalities will be provided weed from selected producers, under government supervision.

Currently, the sale of weed is permitted by coffeeshops, but the purchase and production are not allowed.

The coalition says its goal is to see if the regulation of the cultivation of cannabis reduces nuisance and crime. Also the regulated weed could have less harmful substances than illegally grown weed, according to RTL News.

 

[picture: Dumpert]

Budget Space-Cake

Amsterdam can be damn expensive, so for those wishing to get high on a budget we suggest homemade space cake.

Step 1: Do some research. If you have not tried smoking cannabis before, please do not dive straight into making your own space cake. Edibles purchased at a Coffeeshop are made with a strict and precise dose, so for first timers we recommend space cake from a coffeeshop.

Step 2: Get some soft blond hash, or the least expensive ‘soft’ hash available, avoid black hash, it sticks to your teeth easily.

Step 3: Purchase your favorite chocolate or museli bar for around 1 euro or less.

Step 4: Taking care, split the candy bar in half using a knife or your fingers, if possible.

Step 5: Sprinkle the hashish on half the candy bar. (Coffeeshops generally put 0.3 grams into space cakes, aim for a similar amount.

Step 6: Enjoy the journey, and please remember to keep something sweet on your person, in case you get too high and wish to maintain a lower altitude.

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Birth Of The Coffeeshops

[…] I’ve always been fascinated by the origins of the cannabis tolerance movement in Amsterdam and the Netherlands. How did this happen? How did this little country develop the most intelligent approach to marijuana smoking in the entire world?

At the same time that Holland launched its tolerance campaign, we passed local legislation in Ann Arbor, East Lansing and Ypsilanti that limited marijuana crime punishment to a $5 fine, but our movement never went any further than that until medical marijuana was legalized in 2008.

Amsterdam and the Netherlands went on to establish a system that allowed hundreds of coffeeshops to serve marijuana and hashish smokers for what’s turned out to be almost 50 years.

Here’s how the Anne Bonney, writer of Cannabis in Holland—an Introduction: A Book of Cannabis Truths, says it happened.

HASH HITS EUROPE

     Along with the political and social unrest of the 1960’s came a huge explosion in the use of Cannabis and psychedelics. Another part of the cultural upheaval was travel.

Many young Europeans left the comforts of home or university to travel to the exotic East. In those days the world political situation was such that one could drive (or in some cases, hitchhike) from Europe to Tangiers, Delhi or Kabul and many did.

On their travels the young adventurers adopted many foreign practices—from meditation to vegetarianism and hashish smoking. Soon large quantities of hashish began to find their way back to Western Europe, with Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Copenhagen and other cities becoming consumption and distribution centers.

THE COFFEESHOPS ARE BORN

     By the early 1970’s there was widespread use of Cannabis, speed, heroin, LSD and other recreational drugs presenting various degrees of health risks to Dutch citizens….

The then Minister of Health and Interior, Irene Vorink….concluded that Cannabis was considerably less harmful than the other drugs….Vorink saw that the most common way for Cannabis users to be introduced to drugs “harder” than Cannabis was by the drug sellers themselves.

She took the step of recommending that the authorities stop prosecuting people for the consumption and sales of personal amounts of Cannabis. She then set up a system where access was provided to cannabis in a controlled setting. To do this, she took advantage of existing youth centers as places to permit the sales of small amounts of hashish and marijuana….

The basic concept of the coffeeshop as a place to buy and smoke Cannabis, hang out, have a (non-alcoholic) drink, chat or play a game, has been around since 1971.

That was when the first youth hostel started ignoring smoking and small-scale dealing. It was the government-tolerated selling and smoking in youth centers that provided the model for the coffeeshops of today.

Mila Jansen started a teahouse where people hung out, drank tea and smoked a nice spliff. The first joints were handed out for free as an extra with your cup of tea. Also, people from other countries brought back hashish and other products, so they could trade products with each other.

In 1973, Wernard and three friends opened a small “Tea House” called Mellow Yellow where a single “house-dealer” sold pre-bagged hash and grass from behind the bar rather than the old style where the house simply allowed deals and smoking to go on. Mellow Yellow also sold tea and coffee and had a table football game.

In 1974 Henk de Vries opened the Bulldog Coffeeshop, soon to become world famous, and openly sold hash [as] the first business to use the name “coffeeshop.”
[Note: The coffeeshops proliferated for 20 years until there were 750 or so in the city of Amsterdam alone by 1994, when the federal government began its campaign to regulate and control the traffic in Cannabis, demanding that coffeeshops apply for a license and adhere to the government’s coffeeshop rules:]

THE COFFEESHOP RULES (since 1996)

1. No advertising, including no Cannabis leaf motif in the window or on the sign.
2. No hard drugs, no buying, no selling, no possession, by owner, staff or clients.
3. No public nuisance.
4. No sale of more than five grams to any client on any day.
5. No minors. This means persons under 18.

If shop owners play by these five rules, the government will “turn a blind eye” to the fact that the business sells Cannabis. If any of the five rules are broken, then the shop owner becomes liable for a violation of the Cannabis laws [and subject to loss of license, criminal charges, and/or other punitive measures].

So those are the actual facts of the cannabis issue in Amsterdam and how it sank its roots into the general culture to insure that smokers would be able to get their sacrament. Now let’s have some coffeeshops in Michigan!

Here’s one last little factoid from the Cannabis and Coffeeshops pamphlet: Americans are generally fascinated by the way the Dutch, the British and Europeans in general mix tobacco with their weed before lighting up. I always thought this was because they started out on hashish and smoked it in a mixture with tobacco to keep the flame going. Then weed became available in the 1970s and 80s in large quantities and soon Europeans were smoking 2 grams of marijuana to each gram of hash while using the same mixture concept.

But, as the Grow Grrrlzzz point out, “At first, tobacco was a rare and special imported product, available only to the rich. The seeds were hard to find, of doubtful quality and nobody knew where or how to grow it in Europe. Eventually tobacco became available to enough people that the entire nation [of Holland] took up the craze.

“So, the frugal Dutch began stretching their expensive imported tobacco with the leaves and flowers of their hennep plants by the mid-1500s.” Wow. Free The Weed!

(excerpt from  John Sinclair‘s column FREE THE WEED 70. All Rights Reserved.)

Bubblers, Bongs, Pipes in Coffeeshops

Bongs have been used for thousands of years to ingest the active ingredients of cannabis. Based on the principle of sucking smoke through water to cool and cleanse it, using a tubular mouthpiece attached to a bowl.

Many coffeeshops provide bongs and pipes for public use or you can bring your own. If you’re unsure about how to use something the staff can help you, if they’re not too busy. Try and remember to clean the mouthpiece before use, and if you want to pick up some extra kudos with the staff, offer to clean the bong you just sucked on.

We do not recommend smoking bongs and large pipes in the street, but some larger parks may provide the perfect spot, using a sense of discretion and having respect for others around you at all times.

About Edibles

Cannabis is used around the world to transform well known dishes and snacks into totally new gourmet experiences. From gummy treats and cannabis laced candy, to pot pizza, flying lasagna, ice cream and cookies.

The term ‘edible’ is a slang term used among the cannabis community to denote ‘an edible cannabis product’. A small variety of ‘edibles’ are available at coffeeshops in the Netherlands, these include a standard slice of cake, or a muffin, usually in vanilla or chocolate flavors, and a variety of colors.

All ‘edibles’ in the Netherlands come with a label clearly indicating the amount of cannabis inside, which can range from 0.2 – 0.8 grams per item. The dose is calculated to produce effects which can last between two and four hours.

Please remember that edible cannabis is processed via your digestive system into the bloodstream, so what you ingested before and during the experience can have an effect. The experience is stronger on an empty stomach, and weaker after consuming foods high in sugar, which can be handy to remember if you want to return from orbit sooner.

The experience usually takes between 20 and 40 minutes to begin, compared with smoking which can be felt only a few seconds after inhaling. Take it easy.

About Dutch Medical Cannabis

In the Netherlands the Office of Medical Cannabis (OMC) is the official government bureau that oversees the production and distribution of medical cannabis. It has a monopoly on all cannabis trade, import and export, and can decide on special exemptions to the opium act.

Within the Netherlands OMC distributes exclusively to pharmacies, pharmacy holding GPs, hospitals and veterinarians. Outside of the Netherlands they can also deliver depending on strict agreements between the associated authorities of both nations.

The OMC, in collaboration with the Dutch Health Inspectors, also supervise to ensure the medicine is not used illegally. Unlike the situation in America, cannabis in the Netherlands is prescribed by your local doctor, and picked up from your local dispensary.

Five Tips On Scoring Coffeeshop Kudos

You’re at the coffeeshop, finally getting high. So now here’s a few tips to help impress the staff, and the customers with further exemplary coffeeshop conduct.

1. Hide your tobacco from sight. Coffeeshops are under strict no-tobacco laws, and can face fines if it’s discovered by city authorities. Maybe remind your friend or neighbor too, hide it bro.

2. Bring back your coffee cups and bottles, and ashtray, to the bar. You’ll be saving staff  a trip to clean your table. A general rule of thumb is to leave the table as you found it.

3. Tip well if you can, especially if you borrow a bong or vaporizer which requires a little extra work for staff. Don’t worry if you can’t tip, it’s all good. Make it known how much you appreciate the service vocally, ‘Dankjewel’ sounds like: (Dank-Yer-Vell)

4. If somebody rings your phone, have a little courtesy and take the call outside.

5. Keep the noise down to a minimum. It’s fun to laugh and shout and sing when high, even dance, but please, try to remember that coffeeshops are not booze-bars where you can perpetually scream. Please try to consider the others, way out-there in orbit around you. Cool beans.

Three Places In Amsterdam Where You Can Roll Up Besides Coffeeshops

In Amsterdam there are quite a few places that don’t sell weed yet allow you to roll up freely. Here you can enjoy a toke, and feast your senses on the delights these 420-friendly establishments have to offer.

1. Bars and Restaurants

Restaurants
There are coffeeshops in Amsterdam where top-notch breakfast, lunch or diner is served daily, but even more exclusive are the restaurants that don’t sell cannabis, but cater for smokers specifically. A great example is Munchies restaurant where meals are served along with a well packed vaporizer, if you so desire.

Bars
Beer and buds, whiskey and weed? It’s all possible at Amsterdam’s smoker-friendly bars. In these establishments you can’t buy weed, but they’ll let you roll up. Many bars even have complimentary papers available. For example: The Doors Palace, Batavia, The Wonder Bar, Barnies Uptown, Susie’s Salon, Cafe Soundgarden, Kashmir Lounge, and Lost In Amsterdam. (a word to the wise: keep your cigarettes out of sight in any bars or coffeeshop).

2. Clubs
Back in the day, most clubs and venues in Amsterdam would let you smoke on the dance floor, but after a new tobacco law took effect, tokers found themselves exiled to the smoking area, together with the cigarette fans. Smoking joints is generally fine in the smoking areas but if you have your doubts, just ask (or smell).

3. In Public
It may come as a surprise, but once you’re outdoors in Amsterdam you can smoke weed almost anywhere (with the exception of the Red Light District and Central Station). You can light up at a picnic in the park or during a stroll along the canal, there’s no rule against smoking in public albeit, with common courtesy.