We are committed to keeping our knowledge of international cannabis news current, and as legalized cannabis has become an international reality, our lawyers in Spain and in China are naturally seeing more of this work. Zozayacorrea Sahagún Arizaga, a leading law firm based in Guadalajara, Mexico, gave Harris Bricken the express permission to provide our own English summary along with the original Spanish article.
Mexico’s New Cannabis Laws
Cannabis legalization and regulation in Mexico is imminent.
Late last year, the current Secretary of Government, Olga Sánchez Cordero, presented a legislative proposal to issue the General Law for the Regulation and Control of Cannabis (“The Cannabis Bill”).
The Cannabis Bill would regulate the growing, cultivating, harvesting, producing, transforming, labeling, packaging, advertising, transporting, distributing, selling, marketing, carrying and consuming of cannabis products and its derivatives for personal, scientific and commercial purposes.
In other words, it would regulate pretty much everything.
The Cannabis Bill also proposes creating the Mexican Institute for Regulation and Control of Cannabis (“IMRCC”) to regulate, monitor, sanction, and concentrate registration of cannabis producers and to establish guidelines for cannabis consumption in public spaces. The IMRCC would have the power to issue cannabis licenses and renewable permits for between 5 and 10 years.
In addition to legalizing cannabis production for personal use via production cooperatives, the Cannabis Bill would also set up the following four commercial cannabis categories:
- Therapeutic or Herbal Use: Licensed businesses will be allowed to plant, cultivate, harvest, prepare, produce, process, transport, distribute and sell cannabis and its derivatives for therapeutic purposes. This would not require medical authorization or supervision.
- Pharmaceutical Use: This commercial cannabis category would allow sowing, cultivating, harvesting, preparing, producing, processing, transporting, distributing and selling cannabis and its derivatives for pharmaceutical purposes. Sale of cannabis and cannabis-derivative products under this category would require a medical prescription with purchase through a licensed pharmacy in compliance with Mexico’s General Health Law.
- Adult Use: Businesses licensed under this category would be able to sow, cultivate, harvest, prepare, produce, process, transport, distribute and sell cannabis to adults. Public consumption of cannabis by adults would be regulated the same as tobacco. The sale of cannabis and its derivatives under this category must be made in authorized establishments, which may only market cannabis, derived products and related items. Cannabis sold under this category will be regulated in its amount of tetrahydrocannabinol (“THC”) levels and will require have strict warning and labeling requirements.
- Industrial Use: Cannabis businesses licensed under this category will be permitted to sow, cultivate, harvest, prepare, manufacture, produce, distribute and sell cannabis for industrial purposes.
Businesses applying for licenses under all four of the above categories would need to comply with several legal requirements, including reinforcing the legal age of possession and consumption at 18, and not having been convicted of a “high social impact” crime, money laundering or for organized crime.