Paraguay is one of the world’s largest producers of cannabis and the principal producer of hemp in South America. It is a land locked country in South America. The country has suffered massively from civil unrest, war, and drug trafficking. Some estimates claim that around 9% of the world’s marijuana is produced in this tiny country. In fact, Paraguay is one of the key sources of the cannabis plant and hemp flower for Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, and Chile. But do you know the legal status of cannabis and hemp flower in Paraguay? The fun fact is that most of its production is illegal and strictly forbidden as per the country’s law.
Hemp Flower and Paraguay
In 2017, the government legalized the import of cannabis seeds and to grow it locally for medicinal use. Imported Cannabis oil was very expensive. Perhaps the ban on the growing of cannabis was directly affecting the pockets of Roberto Cabanas, the Vice President of Paraguay’s medical cannabis organization. His daughter suffered from Dravet syndrome and the family had no option other than buying $300 imported cannabis oil. Some say that this may be one of the reasons which expediated the process of decriminalizing the production of medicinal hemp in the country.
How the loosening of cannabis laws can help families living in Paraguay?
The laws regarding cannabis have been loosening since 2017 in the country. In 2019, president Abdo allowed for the controlled production of industrial hemp. This allowed every household to cultivate up to a maximum of 2 hectares (approximately 5 acres) of low-THC industrial hemp. According to some estimates, every hectare of industrial hemp is worth $1545 in Paraguay. If a family manages to grow the maximum allowed limit of 2 hectares per year, it could add $3090 to their income annually. Approximately 25,000 families are expected to take advantage of this new relaxation in the policy.
What concentration of THC is considered psychoactive in Paraguay?
According to the law, a THC content of more than 0.5% will be considered as psychoactive.
What makes Paraguay an ideal place to grow hemp?
The answer is simple: Fertile red soil.
The soil produces a good quality product and allows multiple harvests in one year.
Can you export hemp out of the country?
Yes. The export of hemp flower is legal as long as you have the license. Just last year, Healthy grains, a hemp production company, exported around 1000 kilograms of different forms of hemp including hemp oil, hemp seeds, and hemp powder.
Can possession of hemp land you in jail?
According to the law of the land, you can legally carry 10 grams or less cannabis for personal use.
Is the recreational use of Hemp legal?
The cultivation, sale, and marketing of any sort of hemp for adult recreational use is still illegal in the country.
Is the medicinal use of Hemp legal?
Medicinal use of Cannabis is legal in the country. You can buy it form a pharmacy as long as you have a prescription from a licensed physician in Paraguay.
Medicinal Cannabis in Paraguay
Though the law to legalize medicinal cannabis was passed in 2016, the due diligence and further process took another few year to implement it. In October 2019, the government started issuing license to produce medical cannabis. As per the requirement of the license, a production company must supply the government 2% of all the cannabis produced by them. The government will them use it to treat the needy patients in Paraguay.
Can you grow Cannabis in the country?
Growing cannabis for recreational purposes is strictly illegal as per the law. However, the implementation of the law is weak. A huge amount of marijuana is trafficked illegally into Brazil and Argentina. Almost the entire amount of weed cultivated is sold on the international black market. However, this is changing day by day as law enforcement agencies are increasing their raids and catching culprits using modern technology like helicopters and drones.
The legalization of production of hemp will create hundreds and thousands of jobs. It will definitely improve the livelihood of thousands of people living in Paraguay. However, the problem of regularizing and controlling effectively by the government is still a problem. The remote areas of the country provide a perfect opportunity for big drug traffickers to grow hemp and sell it on black market.