While cannabis remains illegal for recreational use in Chile, the country has taken a progressive approach to cannabis laws and has legalized its use for medical purposes.
Medical cannabis in Chile
Chile legalized medical cannabis in 2015, allowing patients to access cannabis-based medicines with a prescription from a doctor. The law allows for the cultivation, production, and distribution of cannabis-based medicines by authorized companies, and also allows for patients to grow up to six cannabis plants for personal use.
To qualify for medical cannabis, patients must have a qualifying medical condition, such as cancer, epilepsy, or multiple sclerosis, and must obtain a prescription from a licensed medical professional. Patients can purchase cannabis-based medicines from authorized pharmacies, which are regulated by the Chilean Institute of Public Health.
Recreational cannabis in Chile
While cannabis remains illegal for recreational use, Chile has taken steps to decriminalize its use. In 2005, Chile passed a law decriminalizing the possession of small amounts of cannabis for personal use. Under this law, individuals caught with up to 10 grams of cannabis for personal use will not face criminal charges, although they may be subject to fines and drug education programs.
In addition to decriminalization, Chile has also allowed for the cultivation of up to six cannabis plants for personal use. However, the sale, distribution, and transportation of cannabis remain illegal, and those caught violating these laws can face criminal charges and imprisonment.
Cannabis culture in Chile
Despite the legal restrictions, cannabis use is popular in Chile, and the country has a growing cannabis culture. Chile hosts several annual cannabis-related events, including the Expoweed fair, which attracts thousands of attendees each year. The country also has a growing cannabis tourism industry, with many visitors coming to experience the country’s cannabis culture and natural beauty.
Bottom line on cannabis laws in Chile
Chile has taken a progressive approach to cannabis laws, legalizing medical cannabis and decriminalizing its use for personal purposes. While recreational use remains illegal, the country’s approach to cannabis has helped to reduce the stigma surrounding the drug and has created a growing cannabis culture. As cannabis laws continue to evolve, it will be interesting to see how Chile’s approach to cannabis changes in the coming years.