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Netherlands to Launch Cannabis Pilot Program – Cannabis | Weed | Marijuana



The government of the Netherlands will launch a cannabis pilot program with the goal of full-scale legalization

Wait, you might ask, doesn’t the country with Amsterdam cafes already have legal cannabis?

Technically, no. Not legal, like in Canada or Uruguay.

The Dutch decriminalized cannabis in 1972, making possessing an ounce or less a misdemeanour. By 1976, “coffeeshops” were all the rage. The official policy is one of tolerance.

So while it is still technically illegal to buy, sell, or produce cannabis in the Netherlands, the law is not strictly enforced.

Netherlands to Launch Cannabis Pilot Program

Netherlands to Launch Cannabis Pilot Program

It seems as if the days of cannabis prohibition are numbered. Observers expect this Netherlands cannabis pilot program to pave the way to the full legalization of the cannabis supply chain.

The Dutch Senate approved it in 2019, but banking and finding the right growers proved more challenging than initially planned.

That said, full-scale cannabis legalization is the intended goal, according to the Dutch government.

“Together with Minister [of Justice] Yesilgoz-Zegerius, I am committed to making the cannabis experiment successful. I also sense enthusiasm among all participants and am therefore pleased that we can take a first smaller step here even before the official start of the experiment,” Health Minister Ernst Kuipers said in a press statement.

Observers expect the government to begin the pilot program later this year. It will also only involve the regions of Tilburg and Breda, where the Dutch have chosen three cannabis farmers to supply cannabis to the local coffeeshops.

The coffeeshops will still be able to purchase from their current “illicit” suppliers and the legal growers.

The pilot program will conclude in 2024. The Dutch government says it will evaluate the results and determine whether they should expand the legal supply nationwide.

Details of the Pilot Program 

Netherlands to Launch Cannabis Pilot Program

Legal cannabis in the Netherlands must comply with labelling and packaging requirements. However, there will be no THC limits.

Retailers and producers are also free to set and follow market prices. This is important because bad economics is killing the legal Canadian cannabis industry.

Ironically enough, the city of Amsterdam will not participate in the cannabis pilot program. The city council first said they didn’t have an interest. Now they want to be a part of it.

The city seems to be shooting itself in the foot lately.

The city council also banned outdoor cannabis smoking in the city’s famous Red Light District. The ban takes effect in May of this year.

Residents and tourists can still smoke in the coffeeshops.

The Dutch aren’t alone in their interest in legalizing cannabis. German legalization seems as inevitable as the US moving toward a federal legal regime. 

As well, Switzerland has launched a similar cannabis pilot program.

The Czech Republic, where a robust grey market already exists, is also interested in cannabis legalization.

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The Perfect Itinerary for a High Weekend in Amsterdam




Amsterdam is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. It is rich with history and culture, and it is known for its beautiful canals, world-renowned museums, and vibrant nightlife. A weekend getaway to Amsterdam is a popular one, as it’s a small place that you can wander around easily for a few days. With its liberal attitude to life, comes a liberal attitude to cannabis, so Amsterdam is the ideal place to relax and get stoned. But, with so much to do, and a buzz from the weed, it can be hard to know the perfect itinerary. Well, not to worry, we’ve created one for you. Have an amazing time!

Cannabis in Amsterdam

The Netherlands has long been known for its liberal attitude towards cannabis, which has made the country a popular destination for cannabis tourism. In fact, around 18 million people visit the city every year. However, the history of cannabis in the Netherlands is much more complex than a simple acceptance of the drug. The use of cannabis in the Netherlands dates back to the 16th century when the plant was introduced from Asia.

At that time, cannabis was primarily used for its fibre, which was used to make paper and cloth. It wasn’t until the 20th century that cannabis began to be used for its psychoactive effects. In the 1970s, the Netherlands became a hub for counterculture and drug experimentation. This led to a rise in the popularity of cannabis, which was seen as a natural and harmless alternative to harder drugs. In response to this, the Dutch government adopted a policy of tolerance towards cannabis use. 

Gedoogbeleid Policy

The policy allowed for the possession and sale of small amounts of cannabis in designated coffee shops. The policy was implemented in 1976 and was meant to separate the sale of cannabis from the sale of harder drugs, which were still illegal. It is important to realise – because many do not – that this does not mean that cannabis was legalised, but rather decriminalised. While the possession and the sale of small amounts of cannabis were not prosecuted, it was still technically illegal.

The policy also gave local authorities the power to regulate the coffee shops and ensure that they were not selling to minors or causing a nuisance in the community. Some argued that this policy led to an increase in drug use, while others argued that it did not go far enough in decriminalising cannabis. Despite this, Gedoogbeleid has remained in place for over four decades and has made the Netherlands a unique destination for cannabis tourists. However, in recent years, there has been a shift towards a more conservative approach to drug policy in the country, as they try to “clean up their image”.

Dangers of Drug Tourism

Today, the Netherlands still allows for the possession and sale of small amounts of cannabis, but the country’s drug policy is increasingly focused on reducing harm and preventing drug use. In addition, there is an overarching feeling that drug tourists use and abuse the city. Over the last few years, the mayor of the city has been trying desperately to ban tourists from being able to utilise coffeeshops. The Guardian writes:

“In her view, and that of the local heads of police and prosecution bodies, banning tourists from coffee shops is unavoidable in order to reduce the size of the soft drug sector, tackle tourist nuisance and attack hard-drug criminality.”

A great deal of tourists come to the Netherlands with one idea in their mind: getting messed up, and gawking at sex workers in the red light district. This is neither moral, nor profitable for the actual city itself, because rarely do these kinds of tourists end up spending that much money. Amsterdam – whilst liberal in many ways – is used too often like a sinful playground. Instead, it should be respected and adored for its beauty. That is why, we at Cannadelics, ask that if you are planning on going for a high weekend in the city, ensure that you maintain a level of respect for Amsterdam. 

The Perfect Weekend Itinerary

Let’s set the scene. Let’s say you’re arriving in Amsterdam on Friday night, and you’re leaving on Sunday evening. Essentially, you have two days and two nights. Here is the perfect stone itinerary for you. Let’s do this. 

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Friday Night

7 PM: Arrival and Check-in

On the first night, you will arrive in Amsterdam. After landing at the airport or the train station, you can take a taxi to your hotel. Once you check in, you can freshen up and get ready for the evening. This is the ideal time for a delightful dinner and an enjoyable walk through the beautiful glinting canals. 

8 PM: Purchase a Pre-Rolled Joint

Before dinner, it’s time to get your munchies on and chill after a long journey. Head to the Paradox Coffeeshop. This one is super hipster and colourful. It has been around for 30 years, and does not claim to be anything fancy. However, they do focus on quality and care. In addition, it is situated in a quieter area of Amsterdam, so you won’t be bothered by bustling crowds. 

9 PM – Late: Enjoy Leidseplein 

Now it’s time to head to Leidseplein. This area is full of tourists but it’s also a lot of fun. In a sense, it’s made for your enjoyment, and you won’t be bothering any locals for doing it. Go grab an easy bite to eat, a drink, and avoid doing any of the guided bar crawls. They are a waste of money and a scam. Enjoy the flashing lights and buzz from the cannabis. 


11:00 AM: Breakfast at Van Stapele Koekmakerij

Van Stapele Koekmakerij is one of the most famous bakeries in Amsterdam. They are known for their delicious chocolate cookies, and you can have one with your morning coffee. It’s a perfect way to start your first proper day in Amsterdam.

12:00 PM: Explore the Canals

Amsterdam is famous for its beautiful canals, which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. You can take a canal boat tour or rent a bike to explore the city. Biking along the canals is an excellent way to see the city and take in the sights.

2:00 PM: Lunch at De Foodhallen

De Foodhallen is a trendy food market located in the Oud-West neighbourhood. It features a variety of stalls serving different types of food, including burgers, sushi, and pizza. You can have lunch here and try some of the local delicacies.

4:00 PM: Visit the Rijksmuseum

The Rijksmuseum is one of the most famous museums in the world. It houses over 8,000 objects of art and history, including masterpieces by Rembrandt and Vermeer. You can spend a few hours exploring the museum and learning about the history and culture of the city.

7:00 PM: Dinner at The Seafood Bar

The Seafood Bar is a popular restaurant located in the city centre. They serve a variety of fresh seafood, including oysters, lobster, and crab. It’s a perfect place to have dinner with your friends.

9:00 PM: Night Time Coffee Shop

End your second evening with a trip to a fun coffeeshop. Head to the Gray Area and grace the same seats as the likes of Willie Nelson and Snoop Dogg. Time Out writes:

“Held in high esteem by consumers the world over, Grey Area’s reputation is definitely well deserved – it has an extensive selection of award-winning cannabis and a back-to-basics vibe that lets its gear speak for itself.”

You can chill here and see where the evening takes you. 


10:00 AM: Breakfast at The Breakfast Club

Have a wake and bake in the morning with any left-over cannabis you have and then head for breakfast. The Breakfast Club is a trendy restaurant located in the Westerpark neighbourhood. They serve a variety of breakfast dishes, including pancakes, eggs Benedict, and avocado toast. It’s a perfect place to start your day with a hearty meal.

11:00 AM: Visit the Van Gogh Museum

Now it’s time to truly understand the city. The Van Gogh Museum is one of the most famous museums in Amsterdam. It houses the largest collection of Van Gogh’s paintings in the world. His artwork goes hand in hand with a cannabis brain like a spoon and a fork. It is truly perfection. 

12:00 PM: Vondelpark

After a morning at the museum, head to Vondelpark, one of Amsterdam’s most famous parks. The park is the perfect place to relax and take in the beautiful scenery. You can grab some lunch at one of the many cafes and restaurants located within. If you’re feeling especially adventurous why not grab a box of magic truffles and trip out and enjoy the scenery. You can purchase them quite easily from the smartshops around the city. 

2:00 PM: Canal Tour

itinerary high weekend amsterdam

Next, take a beautiful canal tour. Amsterdam is famous for its canals, and taking a boat around them is like something out of a fairytale. The tour will take you past some of the city’s most famous landmarks, such as the Anne Frank House, the Westerkerk, and the Skinny Bridge. This will land you perfectly in the right spot for the next activity too. 

4:00 PM: Anne Frank House

Any trip to Amsterdam would not be complete without a reminder of how lucky we are today. The next stop is a trip to the Anne Frank House. This house is where Anne Frank and her family hid during World War II and is now a museum dedicated to her life and the history of the Holocaust. The museum is a powerful and emotional experience so ensure that you are prepared for it. It is also important to be respectful, so try and be in a sane frame of mind for it so you can truly take it all in. 

6:00 PM: Fly Home


This has been our perfect itinerary for an ideal weekend in Amsterdam. Now, book those flights, and enjoy.

Thanks for making your way over! We appreciate you stopping in at; where we work to bring you the best in independent news coverage for the cannabis and psychedelics spaces. Visit us regularly for daily news, and sign up to the Cannadelics Weekly Newsletter, so you’re always on top of what’s going on.

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Ban on Cannabis Smoking in Red-Light District?




Amsterdam, the capital of Holland, is famous around the world for its liberal and progressive attitude. You can buy cannabis from a variety of coffee shops, you can purchase magic truffles from smartshops and sex work is respected as a profession in the red-light district. However, this reputation has been under scrutiny from the Dutch establishment in recent years, with tourists coming to the beautiful city for all of the wrong reasons.

With many threats and potentials over the last few months, it seems something concrete is actually going to be done. Amsterdam has decided to ban smoking cannabis on the red-light district streets. Is this just an anomaly, or are many more clampdowns soon to follow? Let’s find out. 

Amsterdam: the Liberal City

Amsterdam is a city known for its unique culture and progressive attitudes towards social issues. The city’s liberal mindset is a defining characteristic that sets it apart from other places in the world. From its liberal drug policies to its acceptance of the LGBTQ+ community, Amsterdam is a place where people can feel free to be themselves.


One of the most famous aspects of Amsterdam’s liberal attitude is its policy towards drugs. While drugs are illegal in the Netherlands, the government has taken a lenient approach to soft drugs like cannabis. This has led to the birth of “coffee shops” throughout the city, where customers can purchase and consume cannabis. There are over 160 of these establishments in the capital, and together they add around 400 million euros to the nation’s wealth every year.

The policy has been in place for decades and has been largely successful in reducing drug-related crime and improving public health. Many visitors come to Amsterdam specifically to experience the city’s cannabis culture. In fact, in 2019, the capital received around 20 million tourists. Smartshops also sell other sorts of substances, particularly magic truffles. These contain psilocybin and are essentially a legal, embryonic version of magic mushrooms. Those in Amsterdam are free to purchase these products, head to Vondelpark and trip out. 


Another aspect of Amsterdam’s liberal attitude is its acceptance. One case of this is in regards to the LGBTQ+ community. The city has a long history of tolerance and inclusivity, and it was one of the first places in the world to legalize same-sex marriage. The annual Amsterdam Gay Pride celebration is one of the largest and most vibrant Pride events in the world, drawing visitors from all over to celebrate diversity and acceptance. In addition to these well-known policies, Amsterdam is also known for its progressive attitudes towards issues like sex work. Prostitution is legal in the Netherlands, and sex workers are unionized and protected under the law. The red-light district in De Wallen – one of the oldest parts of Amsterdam – is a section of the city where sex workers can do their job safely. 

The Problem

Whilst Amsterdam is known globally as this beacon of acceptance, it also has another side to it. Tourists from all over the world come to this city to take advantage – to utilize only the hedonistic pleasures. You’ll only have to walk the streets for a few minutes before you see a couple of young Brits falling over themselves, throwing a whitey, after smoking too much weed. It’s a common sight. The incorrect assumption is that Dutch locals smoke cannabis constantly due to the fact that it is accepted, but as is often the case, the legality of it normalizes it and thus makes it less common.

Or, for those that enjoy recreational substances, they do so respectfully and privately without causing a commotion. Amsterdam’s liberal attitude is not without its critics. Some argue that the city’s policies towards drugs and sex work contribute to social problems like addiction and exploitation. However, supporters of Amsterdam’s approach argue that it allows for greater personal freedom and reduces harm by regulating these industries rather than driving them underground. But the issue lies in tourism, not the policies themselves. 

Red-Light District

The red-light district, in essence, is an incredible idea. A place where sex workers can exist, work and be protected. It is also a place for those who desire sex, to come and not feel judged either. Whatever you think about the world of prostitution, in a world where it exists, the red-light district is probably the most ideal and safe solution. However, this is not how it always runs. Amsterdam is now having to tackle the fact that much of their tourism is based around exploiting sex and drugs. The mayor of the city, Femke Halsema, has announced the idea of moving the red-light district somewhere else. Dutch news quotes her saying:

“Sex work belongs to Amsterdam and it will never go away… But the situation in the inner city is unsustainable. Livability has been under pressure for years for residents due to the stream of tourists who regularly misbehave and cause nuisance… By setting up an erotic center, we will lessen the pressure on De Wallen and at the same time create an extraordinary place where sex workers can work safely, legally and undisturbed”

The issue lies in how the red-light district ends up working. Obviously sex workers desire pay, like any other profession. However, many tourists stroll around the red-light district, gaping at the workers, acting abominably and never actually paying for sex. Beyond even the disrespect, the workers aren’t even receiving any financial gain a lot of the time. This is why Halsema wants to move the location, creating an exotic center, where the new spot would hopefully encourage visitors who want to pay for the services. However, as of yet, this idea has not been given the green-light. 

Amsterdam Cannabis Ban

This isn’t the first time the mayor has had an idea that hasn’t come to fruition. Over the last few years, the idea of banning tourists from coffeeshops has also been floated. Whilst these ideas may not have materialized, what it shows is that those who care and live in Amsterdam want a change in how tourists are existing there. The issue, of course, is how much money tourism brings in. Nonetheless, after much uncertainty, there seems to be some concrete change right around the corner. The Guardian announces that Amsterdam is to: “outlaw cannabis-smoking in the red-light district streets”. It reads:

“Smoking cannabis on the street in Amsterdam’s red light district will soon be illegal, the city council has announced, as part of a range of bylaws designed to deter tourist excesses and make life more bearable for despairing local people.”

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This cannabis ban will not only be within the red-light district, there will also be a ban of any weed smoking in the entirety of the inner city of Amsterdam starting mid-May. Other changes are also included. Sex workers will now have to shut at 3am, rather than 6. Restaurants will also be forced to close earlier at 2am, rather than 2 on weekdays. On weekends this will be 3am instead of 4. In regards to drinking, shops within the inner city will have to remove alcohol from their windows anytime that it’s illegal for them to sell it (which is now anytime after 4pm, Thursday-Sunday). The city where anything is possible – has now begun closing its doors. 

The Positives

Whilst some may look upon this news with disappointment, the cannabis ban truly a necessary decision and – in many ways – a positive one for Amsterdam. Ever heard the phrase: ‘you can’t have your cake and eat it’. For too long, tourists have taken advantage of Amsterdam’s uniqueness and turned it sour. Openness, freedom and acceptance should not mean irresponsibly taking recreational drugs, making too much noise, disrespecting locals and using the city as a theme park. Like Icarus, as a society we have yet again flown too close to the sun. We have turned something beautiful into something ugly.

For locals in Amsterdam, the inner city was becoming practically unlivable. Something had to change. But this change isn’t a negative one. For those tourists who still love the city for its immense and diverse attractions – the beautiful canals, the museums, the cafes, the bars – they will have no problems. The city is open and always will be for those who truly love its identity. But for those weekenders who came to Amsterdam for cheap and legal thrills – to cause havoc and leave without cleaning up after themselves – they will be deterred. Is that a bad thing? Probably not. 


Ultimately, Amsterdam’s liberal attitude is a defining feature of the city’s culture and identity. Its policies have made it a unique and fascinating place to visit, and they continue to draw people from all over the world who are interested in experiencing a different way of life. However, this tourism has caused debates over the years and has turned from curiosity to exploitation. It is no surprise that the mayor of Amsterdam has enforced a cannabis ban in the red-light district. Until tourists begin treating the city with the respect it deserves, these sorts of law changes will continue to happen. 

Thanks for making your way over! We appreciate you stopping in at; where we work to bring you the best in independent news coverage for the cannabis and psychedelics spaces. Visit us regularly for daily news, and sign up to the Cannadelics Weekly Newsletter, so you’re always on top of what’s going on.

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