X-POLL – Wednesday May 1st

The Leuven toxicologist Jan Tytgat has proposed that the Belgian authorities should set up a pilot project and market cannabis on their own behalf.

The scientist argues that this would help to counter the growth of illegal cannabis plantations in Belgium and provide guarantees for the quality of the drug.

Tytgat regularly receives samples of cannabis seized at the growing number of illegal cannabis plantations in the country. His job is to carry out a toxicological examination of the drug for the police.

He says the problem isn’t being tackled properly, adding that the country’s repressive approach is costing too much and failing to yield sufficient results.

Under the proposals not everybody would be allowed to cultivate, but it would be the job of the Belgian authorities to establish a system for the cultivation of cannabis.

Jan Tytgat said: “The advantage of a system like this will be that the concentration of the active ingredient THC will be known, no pesticides or other rubbish will be present and that duty can be levied on the users in a completely legal fashion.”

There could be a clamp down on everything outside the legal system. Since the Dutch came down hard on their own plantations, much of the illegal industry has switched to Belgium.

The Belgian Health Minister Laurette Onkelinx is not ruling out a pilot project. She says that Belgium’s cannabis policies have failed and that alternatives should be considered.

What do you think? Does he have a point? Or is it wrong for the government to promote drug use?

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