If the situation concerning medical cannabis and hemp is unblocked in French Polynesia, the Caledonian neighbor is still struggling. The island is cut off from medical cannabis, unable to participate in the metropolitan experimentation with therapeutic cannabis, and CBD is classified as narcotic there. A situation that local actors regret.
Blockages at all levels
Aware of the need to advance the subject at the political level, the Syndicat du Chanvre de Nouvelle-Calédonie (SCNC) was created in April 2022. The objective is to bring the voice of local farmers to the New Caledonian government to succeed in legalizing hemp. The latter, however, seems reluctant to the emergence of such an industry.
“When the government received us, it made it clear to us that there was no question of subsidizing the sector. We answered them: “give us the right, we will take the risks” explains Frédéric Gérard, president of the SCNC.
“If the territory wants to attract capital and balance its external balance, it should set a framework, give itself the means to control licenses and perhaps certify products. Under no circumstances should it stand in the way of private initiative and relative genetic freedom, guaranteeing the establishment of economically viable and competitive applications in the face of imports. »
Because for the moment, if CBD is already sold in New Caledonian shops, despite its narcotic status since 2018, it is imported from mainland France, ecological nonsense for a plant with a negative carbon intake.
On the medical cannabis side, it’s the same blockage. The country cannot take part in the experimentation, research not being a competence of Caillou.
“There is a 1969 law which prohibits everything about Indian hemp, but which authorizes me to apply for a license to exploit poppy or coca”, quips Frédéric Gérard. “So it is time, given that the UN reclassified the plant in December 2020, to classify hemp as a narcotic with medical use”.
The only known use of medical cannabis on the island would be that of synthetic CBD delivered to alcoholics at the Nouméa hospital, under the control of the INCB.
As for the legalization of cannabis, it would also require the agreement of the French National Assembly, New Caledonian criminal law being attached to that of mainland France.
Or how, being at the antipodes of the metropolis, being linked to a 1969 law which prohibits medical cannabis, a 2018 law which classifies the stupefying CBD and a metropolis which does not have the odor of sanctity on the subject.