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Thai government hopes cannabis will be a primary cash crop for farmers

Caitlin Ashworth

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Thai government hopes cannabis will be a primary cash crop for farmers | The Thaiger

While marijuana traffickers are still getting busted by police, many smuggling the plant across the Mekong River, the Thai government is encouraging local farmers to grow cannabis, as long as they partner with a provincial hospital to use the plant for medicinal purposes. A deputy government spokesperson told Reuters the government hopes that cannabis and hemp will be a “primary cash crop for farmers.”

Late last year, Thailand removed certain parts of cannabis off the narcotics list. Parts of the plant with high amounts of the psychoactive component tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, are still classified as a Category 5 narcotic.

So far, 2,500 households in Thailand and 251 provincial hospitals have legally grown 15,000 cannabis plants, according to deputy government spokesperson Traisulee Traisoranakul. She says those interested in growing cannabis have to seek approval from authorities. Universities, community enterprises and those in the medical industry can obtain licenses to grow cannabis.

“Everybody has the right to grow marijuana by partnering up with provincial hospitals for medical use.”

With the declassification of certain cannabis parts, the plant can be used in food and beverages at restaurants. Over the past few months, some cafes and restaurants have started to offer dishes made with cannabis leaves. Traisulee says cannabis used in food ends to come from an approved producer. She says the Medical Marijuana Institute will hold information sessions next month.

SOURCE: Reuters

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34 Comments

34 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Konstantin

    Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 7:17 pm

    Any sort of intoxication is harmful for the most significant part of human’s life- consciousness. Cannabis can be partially beneficial for some body parts and systems and may be powerful enough to treat physical issues… But, as any narcotic, it badly affects consciousness of people, which obscures one’s way to self realization as a soul, which is ultimate goal of human’s life

    • Avatar

      Dreqo

      Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 7:25 pm

      You’re just making things up, Konstantin.

      • Avatar

        Konstantin

        Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 8:11 pm

        I refer to the scriptures, which are applicable practically in that life…I’m not an innocent guy, who has never tried things like this. So I know what I talk about. Any drugs in any view “blind” people and lead them astray down to degradation.
        I think this campaign is lobbied by quite powerful structures, which definitely don’t need free, strong, happy and mindful people.
        As for treatment of some diseases, I’m sure it’s possible to “discover” alternative ways to treat them without implementing cannabis. It’s just similar to that lies concerning protein, when “scientists” claim protein is contained in meat mostly or only, so they encourage consumption of meat (again, because it fills the wallets of bosses of meat production companies). While, in reality they are alternative sources of protein and other vital components for life.

        • Avatar

          Grumpy John

          Monday, February 22, 2021 at 5:25 am

          I am guessing in your country your name is spelt w a c k o! That was my first thought and after some deep thinking I realised I had made a mistake and should correct myself…it is spelt W A C K O!

          • Avatar

            Konstantin

            Monday, February 22, 2021 at 10:38 am

            What does it mean?

          • Avatar

            Konstantin

            Monday, February 22, 2021 at 10:45 am

            Oh, I got it…What makes you think that i am wacko? Cause such words cant be addressed to any person just whimsically…

        • Avatar

          Bill Fischer

          Monday, February 22, 2021 at 6:32 pm

          Which “scriptures”? I majored in Eastern Philosophy at uni. I can assure you the Pali Canons and earliest Sutras don’t address this plant. Buddhism’s core tenet is about abolishing the concept of a ‘personal identity’ or ‘self’ (first thing the Buddha came up with with was the Doctrine of the Anatman [non-self]). Pot introduces you to your essence by stripping away socio-cultural influences.

          If you’re talking about the bible, I think it’s safe to say that the ‘talking bush’ BS could have been due to being high.

          • Avatar

            Konstantin

            Monday, February 22, 2021 at 6:45 pm

            I’m referring to the Vedic scriptures, which disclose the instructions for people to live civilized life. There are four basic principles: no intoxication, no meat eating, no gambling, no illicit sex. Additionally, the knowledge about so called Gunas, or three modes of material nature is also represented: these modes are mode of goodness, mode of passion and mode of ignorance. So, any intoxicants are classified as attributes of mode of ignorance. And that means it promotes impure habits and inclinations in people and leads to degradation.

    • Avatar

      Ynwaps

      Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 8:05 pm

      It’s only harmful for weak conciousness protected by ego inflation.

      • Avatar

        Konstantin

        Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 8:15 pm

        Any proofs?

        • Avatar

          Ynwaps

          Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 9:42 pm

          my anxiety and depression has gone away, I started meditating, working out and consume much less meat nowadays.

          • Avatar

            Konstantin

            Monday, February 22, 2021 at 10:42 am

            Well, I dont deny some positive effects of cannabis, but there is dark side of it, anyway.
            You cannot have absolutely positive effect, using drugs, without any sacrifice.

          • Avatar

            Ynwaps

            Monday, February 22, 2021 at 3:42 pm

            Nothing is without sacrifice. It’s all about balance. Eventually, one has to take a break.

    • Avatar

      chupapi

      Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 8:21 pm

      cannabis is used by humans since prehistory. get over it.

      • Avatar

        Konstantin

        Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 8:35 pm

        Well, in the same way we can claim “People have been killing each other and other living beings since prehistory. Get over it”. The fact that something wrongful has been being done for ages doesn’t mean that we should leave it like this and let it go without prevention now. That’s one of the reasons why we live. Otherwise, that’s just hedonistic concept of an idler.

        • Avatar

          Strider

          Monday, February 22, 2021 at 7:52 am

          There is only one reason why we live, to procreate. Stop making s#!t up.

    • Avatar

      Manu

      Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 8:28 pm

      If you had a brain, you’d be dangerous.

    • Avatar

      dispensed

      Monday, February 22, 2021 at 10:26 am

      Speak for yourself. My consciousness is much improved by ganja.

      • Avatar

        Konstantin

        Monday, February 22, 2021 at 10:54 am

        Man, it’s common for all people…There are no people who have ever truly gained or who will ever truly gain real benefits from this.
        Of course, I dont deny some sort of positiveness and joy, which brings this drug. But point is that the effect is temporary and illusionary. Just like any intoxicant it gives you something “valuable” (that’s why people consume it), but in return and finally it takes away from you much more! The problem is that people are blinded by positive effects and cant see the whole scenario, so they cant see the consequences and what will wait for them later on…

    • Avatar

      Jesus Monroe

      Monday, February 22, 2021 at 4:23 pm

      Thanks for that Konstantin…….I’m well and truly fucked…….haha

  2. Avatar

    Dreqo

    Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 7:23 pm

    Forget it. Until they quit with the nonsensical leafy soups for 500 baht BS, they’ll be left behind as the western world makes leaps and bounds in the cannabis research industry. Meanwhile people will do whatever they see fit outside of “the law” and they’ll be none the wiser. Life will go on regardless of their draconian behaviours.

    • Avatar

      Ynwaps

      Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 8:06 pm

      Always has been

    • Avatar

      Richard

      Monday, February 22, 2021 at 7:27 am

      Would you like a ganja leaf in your soup, no thanks I bought my own

  3. Avatar

    Bruno

    Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 8:21 pm

    Without any doubt this will be a good profit. now it wil be legal to sell drugs – and – never mind the consequences – just if its money then anythings goes – – fraud cheat. .lie. get drugged- wil be like another Afganistan – exporters of drugs. . and self use. . thats why a country never will work, or change

  4. Avatar

    EdwardV

    Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 9:03 pm

    Primary cash crop for farmers? Just how much pot does the government think the hospitals need? If you thought corruption was bad before, just wait till the country is awash with a semi illegal drug. The possibilities for a black market and bribery will be exponentially larger. I’m not making a judgment on use, need or morality. Just pointing out the system being set up is fraught with loopholes, grey areas and potential for illegal abuse. Heck there will be more pot harvested at night than during the day alone.

    • Avatar

      IdidinhalewithThatrwoman

      Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 11:40 pm

      Let’s look at California or Colorado… yes California has some major problems, cannabis consumption (for the sake of getting high) isn’t a problem)

      Colorado took in billions of tax revenue from the part that you get high from.

      The federal govt cannot collect these taxes because it still schedule one drug.

  5. Avatar

    Ian

    Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 10:21 pm

    Exactly Edward my thoughts entirely headline should be
    Cannabis primary cash pot for government not farmers

  6. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Sunday, February 21, 2021 at 10:50 pm

    Here in Phnom Penh cannabis is available everywhere.
    Yet not many take it.
    I suppose the attraction is that is is forbidden.
    If it is cheap and available. nobody want the stuff.

    • Avatar

      Grumpy John

      Monday, February 22, 2021 at 5:30 am

      That’s interesting. Has it been stated such by the local authorities or is that your personal observations?

    • Avatar

      Tony

      Monday, February 22, 2021 at 6:36 pm

      I think the weed needs watering. Relax man relax

  7. Avatar

    Dave the wave

    Monday, February 22, 2021 at 7:22 am

    Marijuana has very little medicinal value. It is a drug to get high and it is addictive. That is the truth. Maybe people will start to using the drug and have a benefit but as time goes by, if they smoke everyday they will be addicted and all the benefits will be end. It is the same with any drug.

  8. Avatar

    Peter

    Monday, February 22, 2021 at 10:24 am

    Will be a funny air pollution when they burn down the crops!

  9. Avatar

    dispensed

    Monday, February 22, 2021 at 10:25 am

    Great news, but it’s only gonna be a major cash crop if you can access lucrative markets (N America, or tourism). Most of the tourists are gone. Even if they get approval to export, Thai weed has a long way to go to compete with the quality you’ll find in N America.

    What you’re left with is the local market, which isn’t exactly lucrative.

    • Avatar

      James Pate

      Monday, February 22, 2021 at 6:09 pm

      Yep, no one in North America wants an inferior product with God knows what in it. The weed in the US is definitely “not your father’s Oldsmobile”.

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Read more headlines, reports & breaking news in Thailand. Or catch up on your Thailand news.

Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

Thailand

Cannabis could generate 8 billion baht for Thai pharmaceutical industry by 2025, expert says

Caitlin Ashworth

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Cannabis could generate 8 billion baht for Thai pharmaceutical industry by 2025, expert says | The Thaiger

Cannabis could become a major cash crop in Thailand. An expert says the cannabis-based medicinal products could generate up to 8 billion baht for the Thai pharmaceutical industry by 2025. Medical cannabis has been legal in Thailand for the past couple years, but recently the government agreed to allow parts of the plant with very, low traces of the “high-inducing” component tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, to be in medicinal products and food.

Cannabis-based medicines have been used as palliative treatment for some cancer patients in Thailand. Last year, nearly 1 million patients used cannabis-based medicines, according to an economist at Kasetsart University’s Agricultural and Resource Economics Department, Ravissa Suchato.

Around 1.2 billion baht worth of medical cannabis was consumed last year, according to Ravissa, who led a recent study on the economic impact of commercial cannabis cultivation in Thailand. If the average consumption rises as expected, medical cannabis could generate 8 billion baht within the next 5 years.

“We believe marijuana has great potential as a cash crop because more patients will start using marijuana-based drugs soon.”

In the past, Thai officials have discussed the opportunity to tap into the global cannabis market by exporting medical cannabis, but Ravissa says Thailand still has a way to go.

“Globally, the recreational use of marijuana has risen a lot faster than pharmaceutical use, so the prospect of exporting marijuana-based medicines from Thailand is still a long way off.”

Parts of the cannabis plant that are rich in THC, like the buds, are still illegal and classified as a Category 5 narcotic. Trafficking the plant is still heavily criminalised. Just over the past few days, border patrol police in the Northeastern province Nakhon Pathom seized hundreds of kilograms of dried, compressed cannabis believed to have been trafficked across the Mekong River from Laos and destined for the South, possibly to Malaysia.

SOURCE: Thai PBS

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Crime

Another drug bust near the Mekong River, 500 kilograms of cannabis seized

Caitlin Ashworth

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Another drug bust near the Mekong River, 500 kilograms of cannabis seized | The Thaiger
PHOTO: MGR Online

In another drug bust in Northeastern province Nakhon Phanom, police arrested a man and seized 500 kilograms of compressed cannabis. Just yesterday, border patrol police in the province seized 920 kilograms of compressed cannabis from a boat on the Mekong River. In both cases, police suspect the cannabis came from Laos, just across the river.

Police say they searched a black Nissan Navara pickup around 1am in the province’s Na Kae district. Police opened the truck’s bed cover and found 12 sacks with 500 packages of dried, compacted cannabis. Each package of cannabis weighed 1 kilogram, similar to the previous bust on the river.

28 year old Saravut Butngam was arrested. Saravut previously worked in construction, but has recently been unemployed. He allegedly told police that a man called him with an opportunity to make 50,000 baht. He was told to drive the pickup truck from a petrol station in the Na Kae district to a specified location in the neighbouring province Sakon Nakhon, police say. From there, another driver would take over.

Border police commander Sippanan Sornkhunkaew says he suspects the cannabis seized in the province was trafficked from Laos across the Mekong River. He says he believes the cannabis was planned to be trafficked to Southern Thailand and then smuggled across the border, possibly to Malaysia.

On Sunday morning, police confiscated 920 kilograms of cannabis from a boat on the Mekong River. When police approached the boat, men jumped off onto a smaller boat and fled the scene. The dried, compacted cannabis was wrapped in 1 kilogram packages.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Drugs

Police seize 920 kilograms of cannabis smuggled across the Mekong River

Caitlin Ashworth

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Police seize 920 kilograms of cannabis smuggled across the Mekong River | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Thairath

In a major bust on the Mekong River, notorious for drug smuggling, border patrol police seized 920 kilograms of dried, compacted cannabis from a boat along the Nakhon Pathom riverbank, bordering Laos.

Police were tipped off about a large shipment of drugs being trafficked across the Thai-Laos border. Police spotted a boat around 4am yesterday. When police moved in, men onboard the boat jumped onto a smaller boat and sped off. Police found 23 sacks filled with 1-kilogram packages of compressed cannabis.

Police seize 920 kilograms of cannabis smuggled across the Mekong River | News by The Thaiger

PHOTO: MGR Online

In the recent months, police have seized more than 5 tonnes of cannabis. While the Thai government has been loosening measures on cannabis, allowing parts of the plant with low traces of the psychoactive component tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, to be used in food and medicinal products, trafficking cannabis is still illegal. Cannabis with high amounts of THC is still classified as a Category 5 narcotic.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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