Birthplace of semi-legal pot risks falling behind U.S.

Despite a thriving marijuana culture, the Netherlands could miss out on billions of euros in profits
Bloomberg (US)
Monday, January 13, 2020

Since the Netherlands decriminalized marijuana in 1976, Amsterdam’s “coffee shops” have become a destination for weed lovers from around the globe. But pot has never been fully legalized in the country: You won’t get busted for smoking or selling small quantities, but producing or selling it in bulk remains a legal gray zone. And that’s proving to be a handicap for the Dutch marijuana industry as full legalization speeds ahead elsewhere. Dutch seeds are considered the gold standard worldwide, and people with ties to the Netherlands are a big part of the global business. Many of the country’s growers say the future lies across the Atlantic, where Canada and 11 U.S. states now allow recreational pot use, and many more states permit medicinal consumption.