Department of Health, agencies aim to deter recreational use of weed

Potted tea tasting test: Deputy Prime Minister Anutin Charnvirakul tastes cannabis tea at an exhibition which yesterday hosted a signing ceremony on cannabis and hemp between relevant agencies of the Ministry of Public Health. (Photo: Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)

The Ministry of Public Health has signed an agreement with eight agencies to emphasize the use of cannabis and hemp for medical, beauty and research and development purposes, fearing that people will use it for recreational purposes when allowed to grow the plants at home from June 9. .

The signatories are Ministry of Public Health, Ministry of Tourism and Sports, Thailand Health Promotion Foundation, Mass Communication Organization of Thailand, Medical Council of Thailand, Traditional Thai Medical Council, the Pharmacy Board of Thailand and the Thai Nursing and Midwifery Board. The signing event was observed by the Royal Thai Police, the Office of the Narcotics Control Board and the Food and Drug Administration.

Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul said yesterday that the agreement will help improve market value and encourage product diversification in areas such as food ingredients, herbal remedies and cosmetics, from June 9, cannabis will be officially removed from the list of type 5 narcotics.

However, all products containing more than 0.2% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) extract, the chemical responsible for most of the psychoactive effects of cannabis, are still recognized as Category 5 substances and regulated by the laws relating to cannabis. drug control and abolition.

“People can grow cannabis at home for medical purposes after registering cultivation with provincial administrative organizations, or through the Pluk Kan mobile app, developed and operated by the Food and Drug Administration. Home grown cannabis will help to save money for some patients who need to use the plant for medical treatments,” he said.

He said removing cannabis as a narcotic does not mean people can use it freely, especially for recreational purposes.

He said the ministry had asked the House of Representatives to fast-track the bill which is expected to be debated in parliament this quarter.

“Registration is required for home cultivation. There is no limit to the number of plants but they must have fenced enclosures for safety and to prevent them from being stolen or taken by other people” , did he declare.

The Ministry of Public Health will prepare guidelines for cannabis users on preventing second-hand smoke from affecting others and propose them to the National Public Health Committee on May 30, Anutin said.

Maria J. Book