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More than four decades after the decriminalization of cannabis use in the Netherlands,  the Dutch parliament finally voted to also decriminalize the cultivation of cannabis. This vote opens the way for regulation of the coffeeshop supply chain.

Regulating the slupply of weed to the coffeeshops would end an ongoing contradiction, as a coffeeshop is allowed to sell cannabis within the legally tolerated limits, but its suppliers are not allowed to grow, import or sell cannabis products to the coffeeshop: “The front door is open, but the backdoor is illegal.”

For 40 years, suppliers of coffeeshops and the coffeeshop owners have risked prosecution due to this deadlock.

The new measures were drafted by Vera Bergkamp of the liberal D66 political party, and passed 77 votes to 72. “This is an important step to end a stalemate that has lasted far too long.” Bergkamp told Dutch press.

Due to the slim margin of votes in favour of the new legislation, and the reshuffle of parliament after the 2017 general election, it’s possible that new policy maybe derailed, slowed down, or haulted. For example, present prime minister Mark Rutte, who’s liberal-conservative party is currently leading the polls, does not support the new measures.

Four decades after the decriminalization of marijuana in the Netherlands, the Dutch parliament today finally voted on policy to regulate the weed supply chain.

The back door supply chain has been a point of debate between coffeeshops and the government for 40 years. Although coffeeshops are licensed to sell small amounts of cannabis under strict guidelines, the manufacture and delivery of the product is strictly illegal, with risk of punishment.

Under new back-door regulation policies, the coffeeshops can operate without such fear of prosecution. .also. quality control ..

It all sounds like good news but we can question the value of this vote as two weeks from now the Dutch national elections will take place and major power shifts are on Holland’s political horizon. Looking at the polls, a reshuffled parliament (and the following government) may not be able to reach the same majority needed to accualy change policy in the following term.

A fresh proposal from the Dutch social-liberal party, D66, wants to customize the policy on cannabis. With these proposed changes, the cultivation and supply of cannabis will be regulated together with coffeeshop retail, and become part of a closed supply chain.

Growers would require a tolerance decision from the Minister of Health. The production of cannabis would remain illegal, but no longer punishable. Growers would also become taxable, and at long last the production of marijuana and hashish can be held to account regarding public health standards.

Hash and weed would be delivered to the coffeeshop sealed inside labelled packages containing up to 5 grams. This way coffeeshops can be supplied in a responsible manner, and consumers know exactly what they’re getting.

How to impliment this new policy on the ground would be largly left up to the municipalities.


Amsterdam may be the weed capital of the world, but The Hague has the country’s best coffee shop. That’s the conclusion of the Young Democrats, who held their own National Coffeeshop Test.

Dutch newspaper, AD reports that the Young Democrats, the youth organization of the country’s social-liberal party, tried coffeeshops everywhere in the country and tested for the level of education of the staff, hygiene and how the product is presented and whether there is a separate room to consume the purchased product.

‘People who walk in here sometimes ask whether it is a wellness center ” laughs manager Mike de Jong. The coffee shop is already 25 years in the Marnixstraat, but has a new owner since more than two years. Since then, everything done to improve the appearance. Because we want a tidy tent where you can just walk in, ” said De Jong.
That past was one of the reasons that The Point was awarded the title “Best coffee shop in the Netherlands,” says Wouter van Erkel, president of the Young Democrats.  It used to be a dark cave. Fortunately, that is no longer so. This coffee shop is now an example for other shops. ‘


Great news! after the spree of coffeeshop closures in Amsterdam, the following coffeeshops will be allowed to reopen:

De Kroon on Rietwijkerstraat (Closed January 2016)

DNA on Achillesstraat, (Closed September 2016)

The Green Place on Kloveniersburgwal (Closed September 2016)

Blue Lagoon on Overtoom (Closed October 2016)

Vondel on Overtoom (Closed October 2016)

Greenhouse Kitchen on Haarlemmerstraat (Closed November 2016)

Coffeeshop Speak Easy on Eerste Oosterparkstraat (Closed November 2016)


Sprekers: Rick Simpson, Noll Van Shaik, Has Cornelissen.

Muziek: Will and the People (UK) Armand Tribute, Van Piekeren, Dramali, Iris Penning, United Sounds, Rupelsoldaten (B), DJ Skunkstar, Covenant Soundsystem
The eighth edition of the “protestival” Cannabis Liberation Day again drew hundreds of 420 enthusiasts to Flevopark in Amsterdam.

The revelers protested against the 40 year old policy of the tolerance of marijuana in the Netherlands, and called for all-out legalisation. Recent plans by the city of Amsterdam to start local experiments with regulated weed, grown and distributed under the watchful eye of City Hall, were met with healthy skepticism on the festival grounds. Organizer Derrick Bergman: “We are against ‘municipality weed’. We are all for regulation, we need more control, more clean weed without pesticides. But not from the goverment”

In the tradition of the annual Cannabis Liberation Day, the festival included a hemp market , a number of speakers, musical performances and the annual Cannabis Film Festival.

The scent of quality cannabis hovered above the crowd as an abundance of weed and hashish went up in vapor and smoke.


Sprekers: Marc and Jodie Emery, Doede De Jong, Annie Machon (LEAP)

Muziek: Natty (UK) Einstein Barbie, Knight Susan, Rupelsoldaten (B), Isabelle Ame, Covenant Soundsystem, DJ Skunkstar, DJ Dr Thompson (UK)

What’s on?

Apart from a full program with national and international artists, speakers and Dj’s, there’s a large Hemp Market with cannabis and hemp related companies and organizations, fresh food and drinks and a free Cannabis Film Festival in Europe’s largest Ger tent. For the second time we are hosting the award ceremonies of the annual Highlife Cup, the oldest cannabis contest in the Netherlands.

14.00-14.05:    Opening: Derrick Bergman & DC Lama
14.05-14.35:    STOOKER & JANSEN & bellydancer Naïma
14.35-14.40:    Speaker: Mila Jansen
14.40-15.15:    Dj Neo Pro
15.15-16.05:    VAN PIEKEREN
16.05-16.10:    Speaker: Henk van Dalen
16.10-16.25:    Highlife Cup awards ceremony part 1
16.25-17.10:    Dj Skunkstar (Austria)
17.10-17.30:    Highlife Cup awards ceremony part 2
17.30-18.30:    HARRY MO & BAND (Virgin Islands)
18.30-18.35:    Speaker: Hanka Gabrielová (Czech Republic)
18.35-19.05:    Dj Neo Pro
19.05-19.30:    REAZUN
19.30-19.35:    Spreker 4: Michel Degens (Belgium)
19.35-20.35:    DEF P & BL3NDER
20.35-20.55:    Dj Skunkstar (Austria)
20.55-21.00:    Speaker: Doede de Jong (Friesland)
21.00-22.00:    ANTWERP GIPSY SKA ORCHESTRA (Belgium)

February 2014 – “It takes courage to refrain from doing what, to some people, seems logical on the drawing board.”

This was the astounding reply of Ivo Opstelten, the Dutch Minister of Security and Justice, to the Dutch mayors who stand for the regulation of the cannabis supply chain. The 35 mayors recently joined forces to convince the minister to regulate the cultivation of cannabis needed to supply coffeeshops across the country.

Many involved experts, backed by the Mayors of 35 Dutch towns and cities, including Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Utrecht, argue that the current laws only allow the sale but not the cultivation of marijuana. Dutch coffeeshops, which are allowed to sell hash and weed, cannot buy their stock legally. This encourages organized crime and wastes police time, according to the mayors.

Ahmed Aboutaleb, the mayor of Rotterdam, told local press that cannabis cafes had to rely on “murky worlds”, and that the current situation in Holland was unsustainable.

The Mayors recently offered the minister a manifest titled “Joint Regulation”, calling for long overdue policy change. Quoting from the manifest:

“This manifest is a plea to the cabinet – in particular to the under-minister of the Department of Health and to the minister of the Department of Security and Justice – and the members of parliament to turn their ears to the cities and change coarse. A coarse that can make a change in the way these problems are dealt with. Our call: implement, together with us, a nation-wide system of certification and regulation for the cultivation of cannabis. Only then a solution may be possible.”

However, the Dutch government won’t budge and argues that any change in the law would not be welcomed by neighboring countries. Minister Opstelten said after a cabinet meeting in response to the Joint Regulation weed manifesto that the mayors signed in Utrecht, he will tour the ‘country’ in order to discuss the prevention of crime and nuisance weed plantations, with mayors and municipalities.

In spite of Hollands progressive history, the recent global trend of cannabis legislation shows the Dutch policies falling behind.

The international tide is turning as the world becomes more weed friendly. Many countries in Europe have decriminalized marijuana. The United States has legalized cannabis shops in Colorado with Washington State set to follow, while in South America, Uruguay became the first nation to fully legalize cannabis.

From the 1970’s Holland has been one of the few countries in the world where you can have a joint without worrying about getting busted and cities such as Amsterdam have since been celebrated by cannabis connoisseurs and freedom hungry travelers from around the globe.

The ‘weed pass law’ (restrcting foreigners from coffeeshops) was due to be introduced nationally on January 1st 2013 but in November 2012 it was repealed. Although municipalities are now still able to regulate the sale of marijuana, It leaves the issue of regulating the supply untouched.