United Kingdom


Effort to legalize cannabis in United Kingdom struck down in parliament

Members of the UK Parliament shouted down a proposed bill to legalize, regulate and tax adult-use cannabis. Liberal Democratic Member of Parliament and former health minister Norman Lamb introduced the bill under the House of Commons’ Ten Minute Rule. The Ten Minute Rule allows MPs who don’t traditionally have the opportunity to present legislation, to make their case for a new bill in a speech limited to just ten minutes. After the speech, the House decides whether or not to introduce the bill. And if the MP succeeds, the bill earns its first reading. But despite Lamb’s best efforts to argue for legalization, MPs opposed to cannabis bested the bill, voting 66-52 to block it.


Woman becomes first UK patient to get cannabis prescription

A 32-year-old woman is believed to be the first person prescribed cannabis in the UK after it was made legal for medicinal use last month.

Carly Barton, from Brighton, who suffers constant pain from fibromyalgia following a stroke in her 20s, was given a prescription by a private doctor who specialises in pain management.

The NHS is not funding the treatment, so she is having to pay £2,500 for three months' treatment herself.

She hopes that if she can show it is helping her chronic pain, it could "open the floodgates" for the government to decide to pay for the treatment for herself and others.

"In terms of money this is going to cost me everything I have, so two and a half grand for three months' supply," she said in a Facebook video.


Canadian weed giant backs medical marijuana trials in U.K.

One of the world’s biggest cannabis growers is preparing to fund clinical trials of marijuana-based drugs in the U.K. that could help jump-start the nascent British market.

Canopy Growth Corp., the Canadian pot producer, and a consortium of investors said they’re putting 7.4 million pounds ($9.5 million) into testing medical cannabis for treatment of pain and opioid dependence. Beckley Canopy Therapeutics Ltd., a U.K. firm partly owned by Ontario-based Canopy, will conduct the tests.


UK’s first-ever hemp syrup for cocktails

Cocktail mixer and fruit purée brand Funkin has created a syrup flavoured with hemp, a variety of the cannabis sativa plant species.

The FunkinPro Hemp Syrup is the latest product to join Funkin’s single-batch Pro range and has been designed to complement cocktails and work with a plethora of spirits, from tequila, gin and rum to bitters.

Offering herbal and green-tea notes, the syrup has a natural green-yellow colour given by the use of British hemp seed extract and a sweetness from pure cane sugar.


The United Kingdom will soon have first cannabis-infused restaurant

On November 1, the United Kingdom legalized medical cannabis treatments. Adult use, however, remains under prohibition. And as happens in many cases when cannabis legalization is both popular and desired but barred by prohibition, interest is rapidly growing in the next best thing: cannabidiol, or CBD. Despite the prohibition on cannabis, hemp CBD products are legal in the U.K., as are hemp agricultural products. This creates openings for businesses to capitalize on consumer demand for cannabis with legal hemp and CBD products. And The Canna Kitchen, located in Brighton, is the first restaurant to do exactly that.


'Something has gone very wrong here': British MPs condemn the UK's new medical marijuana regulations

Medical marijuana is technically legal in the UK now, but some critics say it's harder to get than ever before, writes Calvin Hughes.


UK: Medicinal cannabis legalization could very well open the door to allowing recreational use

The home secretary is adamant that the law change will not mean further marijuana liberalisation, but there are substantial financial forces working for exactly that outcome.

Only two things are clear in the Home Office move to allow access to cannabis for health reasons, you won’t be allowed to smoke a joint and the home secretary is adamant the new policy is not a step towards allowing access to cannabis for pleasure. But this still leaves a lot of issues unclear.


UK’s legalization of medical cannabis sparks talk of possible recreational laws

The United Kingdom announced today a relaxation of its cannabis laws that will allow specialist doctors to prescribe cannabis-based products for certain patients. It’s a modest change to the U.K.’s cannabis laws. But it’s one that has already sparked a conversation on the broader legalization of cannabis for adult-use. Recent surveys put support for adult-use legalization at 59 percent. Top officials within the U.K. government, however, are denying that the rescheduling of cannabis-based medical treatments is a step toward full legalization.


Medical cannabis can now be prescribed in the UK

More people in the UK will have access to medical cannabis as of today following last month’s announcement that the rules around prescribing cannabis would be relaxed.

The change in law follows the stories of high profile cases such as Billy Caldwell and Alfie Dingley, both children who have suffered from epilepsy whose symptoms have been alleviated by using cannabis oil.

“I have personally seen how my son’s life has changed due to the medical cannabis he is now prescribed,” Alfie’s mother Hannah Deacon said in welcoming the shift. “As a family we were facing his death. Now we are facing his life, full of joy and hope which is something I wish for each and every person in this country who could benefit from this medicine.”


Medical cannabis treatments in UK to be limited over doctors' fears and lack of regulation despite new law

Only a minority of patients who stand to benefit from potentially life-changing medicinal cannabis prescriptions will be able to access it after laws change on 1 November, experts have warned.

Despite the potential to help thousands with conditions like epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and nausea from cancer treatment, The Independent has learned that most doctors are so far refusing to prescribe.


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