Fumes filled the air, as German authorities used a power station in Bavaria to burn over a tonne of high-quality cannabis.
Even in a pro-legalization climate, countries around the world continue to use medieval practices to deal with the illegal cannabis trade. Germany offers up the latest example. Munich Customs officials recently burned over a tonne of high-quality cannabis discovered in a Serbian truck near Nuremberg. The cannabis was confiscated a year ago. This means the German government stored the cannabis for some time before deciding to let it go up in flames.
Laboratory tests conducted by customs reveal that the cannabis was surprisingly potent. The high-quality cannabis held a 16 percent Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) level. This surpasses most of the buds on the street. The marijuana was worth several million euros if sold. Even more, if it is processed into shatter, oils, or tinctures.
Medicinal use of marijuana is legal in Germany. However, only marijuana traced back to a licensed producer is permitted for use. The authorities suspected the country of origin was Albania, but not enough information was gathered to stop the burning of the herb. The hefty incinerator ran at 1000 degrees, removing all hopes of the surrounding area receiving a contact high. Plant Manager Thoman Konig tried to justify the waste by saying,
“The material is used to generate heating and electricity for the people in the region. It’s a benefit for the general public, so to speak.”
Government’s Need to Become More Creative
Governments around the world cannot continue to take days off when it comes to seizing marijuana. Too frequently, do we see them taking the easy way out: firing up the incinerator and watching while the world burns. The right way isn’t always the easiest way out. As the global legalization climate shifts, more economic opportunities will arise for both private and public organizations.
The governments that take proactive steps to prepare themselves for the expansion of a global cannabis industry will be better situated to capitalize on said economic opportunities. For example, after testing Germany could have sold the confiscated weed to a country for medicinal purposes, or use it for their own industry. They could have processed the herb into a product or concentrate, increasing its value.
The opportunities were endless, and they chose the least creative option: incinerate it all. Well done Germany (slow sarcastic clap), well done.