Will The Government Kill Cannabis Home-Grow In Argentina? Speculation Continues

By Lucía Tedesco via El Planteo

The future of the REPROCANN program, which regulates the self-cultivation of medicinal cannabis in Argentina and authorizes personal cultivation, continues to be shrouded in uncertainty. Recent events and statements from the Ministries of Health and Security have sparked concern among users, growers and cannabis organizations.

Although the continuation of REPROCANN is assured by the sanctioning of Decree 10/2024, the parameters under which it will operate remain unclear. The debate has intensified recently, fueled by past statements made by TV host Eduardo Feinmann and doctor Claudio Zin.

Changes For Cannabis In Argentina: Is REPROCANN’s Self-Cultivation At Risk?

Informed lawyers, such as Andrés Bacigalupo and Piero Liebman, spoke with Revista Mate on the matter.

While Bacigalupo suggests that the new government might be reinterpreting existing regulations in a way that could limit citizen access and favor concentrated economic sectors, Liebman believes that “the law and the regulatory process of cannabis is a journey, and on this journey, we have not yet reached the end. It has imperfections and many things to improve. However, to argue that it was bad per se because it was a measure from the previous government is very worrying.”

Adding to the doubts, confusion arises from the overlapping information between REPROCANN and the INASE registry (National Seed Institute), which, despite having common points, are not the same. INASE regulates the conditions for the production, dissemination, management and conditioning of cannabis propagation organs to ensure their quality, health and traceability. However, it does not involve self-cultivation, which is what REPROCANN addresses.

The reality is that there’s an attempt to deny the positive impact of cannabis for hundreds of thousands of users. Although there have been no official statements yet, the information continues to circulate. The Secretary of the Fight Against Drug Trafficking, Martín Verrier, pointed out that medicinal cannabis will be maintained, but work will be done to modify the current resolution of the registry: “It is necessary to promote the medicinal use of cannabis, but in the same way as other psychoactive medicines on the market are regulated. Cannabis is the only medicine that is self-cultivated.”

It seems there is an interest on the part of the government in having laboratories and big pharma play a predominant role in production and in restricting self-cultivation and artisanal production. This is somewhat similar to what happened during Mauricio Macri’s government with Decree 738/17, which was more restrictive and nearly inaccessible.

In the latest edition of “Señales de Humo,” a newsletter written by journalist Fero Soriano, there’s talk of “eliminating the ministerial resolution and the regulation of the law that sets the conditions for authorization,” complicating self-cultivation and authorized NGOs to grow for others.

For their part, civil associations, gathered in the Honorary Advisory Council of Law 27.350, have sent a letter to the Minister of Health requesting the acceleration of approvals in Reprocann, given the delays and questions raised.

In this context of uncertainty, legal experts suggest that the debate could reach judicial instances, confronting the interpretation and recognition of the human rights involved. Also, a return to the known punitive approach is possible, in which users face persecution and even raids by authorities.

However, one thing is certain: no cannabis activist will stand by idly watching years of struggle be destroyed in minutes.

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This article is from an external unpaid contributor. It does not represent Benzinga’s reporting and has not been edited for content or accuracy.

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