Thai Health Minister, Anutin Charnvirakul, announced in a May Facebook post that the Thai government will distribute 1,000,000 cannabis plants for medical purposes to households across the nation for free starting in June.
Thai Health Minister, Anutin Charnvirakul, announced in a May 8 Facebook post that the Thai government will distribute 1,000,000 cannabis plants to households for free starting June 9 (1). Thailand residents will be able grow “as many cannabis plants” as they like in their own homes for medical purposes only, according to Charnvirakul (2). Reportedly, licensing will not be required for home cultivation, unlike commercial cannabis and hemp companies in the country. Large-scale enterprises will still need permission from the country’s Food and Drug Administration to make cannabis products (3).
In an additional Facebook post on May 10, Charnvirakul noted that Thai companies registered to do so could sell cannabis products that contained less than 0.2% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). “This will enable people and the government to generate more than 10 billion baht ($288,846,200 per year) in revenue from marijuana and hemp,” Charnvirakul said. “Meanwhile, people can showcase their cannabis and hemp-related products and wisdom and sell their products nationwide” (1).
In 2018, Thailand became the first country in Southeast Asia to legalize cannabis for medical research and use, and last January it became the first country in Asia to legally allow cannabis. The intention is to redefine cannabis as a “household crop,” and is the latest step in Thailand’s plan to transform cannabis into a cash crop (2).