Thailand Legalizes Low-THC Cannabis for Medical Uses, Plant Giveaway Planned

Thailand’s Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul (left) and the country’s legendary "Thai Stick" (High Times image)

Thailand's new cannabis law goes into effect today. It allows residents to possess and grow low-THC ganja. It's essentially legal CBD, like in 11 U.S. states that don't have extensive medical-marjjuana programs.

Still, it's big news in a nation American stoners best know for "Thai Stick" (dried buds tied around a stick, brought back by soldiers in the late '60s and early '70s).

According to a FAQ by Bangkok Post:

"Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul has long pushed for decriminalisation of cannabis in Thailand. He stressed multiple times the current easing of marijuana restrictions aims to promote three areas: highlighting the medical benefits, serving as an alternative treatment for patients and supporting a green economy by pushing marijuana and hemp to be cash crops.

"The image of California-style weed dispensaries or people lighting up at the beach is not what the Thai government has in mind. Still, the law could change to promote recreational use in the future."

On Feburary 9, Charnvirakul announced the "delisting [of] cannabis and hemp as controlled substances from the Category 5 list of narcotics in the Royal Gazette." Four months later, it became law.

The new law permits home cultivation of cannabis containing no more than 0.02% THC. Thais are supposed to register with the governemt's Food and Drug Administration as growers.

On May 8, the Thai governemt said it would be distributing one million cannabis plants to households in June.

Cannabis is known as ganja in Thailand.


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Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.