Guyana is a small country with a population of just over 780,000 people. Though a country on the northern mainland of South America, it is often considered a part of the Caribbean region due to its strong cultural, historical, and political ties. Agriculture is a significant and important part of the company’s economy. Therefore, you can very well guess the fertility of the land. Thus, hemp flower gets the perfect soil to grow!
History of Hemp in Guyana
In the early 20th century, laborers from India brought the custom and culture of smoking ganja, not only in Guyana but also in other parts of the British Caribbean.
Later an ordinance was passed, and cultivation and possession of cannabis were made illegal. In 2015, a demonstration was held outside the attorney general office to decriminalize cannabis.
Can you grow hemp in Guyana?
The cultivation and selling of hemp or cannabis are illegal as of yet. In 1987, a Guyanese member of parliament was arrested for possession and sale of cannabis. However, it is both grown and consumed in the country. The plant and leaf are grown all year round and are often of high quality—the majority of the cannabis produced is not exported and only consumed by the locals. A lot of effort and work is being made to legalize the cultivation of hemp for industrial use.
Can the possession of hemp land you in jail?
Recently in 2015, Guyanese soccer player, Vibert Butts was convicted and sent to prison for three years as he was caught with 46 grams of cannabis. The drug enforcement units of law enforcement agencies actively conduct Anti cannabis operations. Thus, possession of hemp can lead to severe punishments.
What quantity of hemp is considered drug trafficking?
Possession of 15 grams or more can result in charges of drug trafficking.
Is the medicinal use or production of hemp allowed?
No, the production, sale, promotion of any sort of medicinal hemp/marijuana are illegal according to the law of the country.
The government has claimed that it will be looking into legalizing the cultivation of hemp for industrial use. Industrial hemp is used in the production of a number of key products like food, medicine, organic body products, clothing, construction material, automobile parts, etc. Hemp crop and industry has the potential to eradicate poverty and create jobs at every income level in Guyana. Advocates of hemp production claim that hemp can be used to produce 50,000 items, and its cultivation can create as many as 40,000 to 50,000 more jobs in the country. Within months of legalization, it could lead people down a viable path to a good life. More disposable incomes mean more money will be available for investments. Private sector and public sector revenue will directly and exponentially increase for further wealth development, and expedited infrastructure development and maintenance. Thus, the cultivation of hemp could vastly improve the agriculture-based economy of Guyana.
Michael Kirton, co-chairman at Guyana Hemp Industries (GHI), in an interview, said, “The Guyanese government should eliminate legislative barriers that are preventing farmers and processors from creating a vibrant new industry for the South American coastal nation.”
Hope for the future!
One of the key campaign promises of the current administration before the election was to decriminalize the possession of up to 30 grams of marijuana. The minister of legal affairs recently said that the campaign promise would not be broken. All in all, the legal status of both the possession of small amounts of marijuana for personal use and cultivation of hemp and marijuana is expected to relax in the future.