If the cultivation of the cannabis plant and its consumption are totally prohibited by French law, paradoxically the purchase and sale of cannabis seeds are authorized in France, provided that they are not germinated…
Cannabis seeds: what does French legislation say?
Although the sale and even the possession of cannabis is strictly prohibited in France, the market for cannabis seeds continues to grow. At the same time, France is the heaviest cannabis user in Europe. While a multitude of websites offer to buy cannabis seeds in a few clicks, many people still wonder whether this product is legal or not. Indeed, the French legislation is somewhat strange and hypocritical, so that it is sometimes difficult to really define the law around the marketing of these seeds.
Let’s say it’s the result of some legal loophole that makes ungerminated seeds not banned. Therefore, the purchase of cannabis seeds on the website is completely legal. The Cannabis seed which gives rise to plants capable of producing the psychoactive substance, can thus be shipped to France quite legally by cannabis seed banks located within the European Union. Insofar as it cannot be proven that the recipient of the seeds intends to use them illegally, they are considered like all other seeds. In theory, however, these people are not allowed to plant said seeds…
A law authorizing the cultivation of certain industrial hemp seeds
In France, except in exceptional cases, only varieties of industrial hemp respecting a THC content (Tetrahydrocannabinol) less than 0.2% may be permitted. On the other hand, the law prohibits all types of narcotic substances. The law then allows the circulation of hemp seeds (the name given to hemp seed) as well as their trade between the Member States of the European zone, including France if these conditions are respected.
The use of legal hemp seeds is possible for individuals. In addition, their cultivation, use and production for commercial purposes or other professional activities are highly regulated. In fact, these varieties are non-psychotropic hemp.
The cultivars authorized in the context of industrial hemp are strictly limited to a list of 20 varieties, which leaves no possibility of producing plants with psychoactive properties. These varieties have a THC concentration of less than 0.2% and do not offer the same therapeutic properties as their psychoactive cousin varieties.
the THC is the main component of cannabis, it causes psychic and physiological effects. So, in order to be within the standards, a maximum rate has been defined and therefore all seeds that exceed this limit will be considered illegal.
What are the risks if we plant illegal cannabis in France?
The production of cannabis is sanctioned by French law, with a sentence of up to 20 years’ imprisonment or a fine of up to 7,500,000 euros. Cannabis for medical use is not authorized in France, which means that production for “personal use” is also prohibited.
However, following the same principle applied to consumers, the decision whether or not to pursue the investigation rests with the judge and the prosecutor. Very few cannabis growers have been given the maximum penalty, and those who have were at the helm of an industrial-scale cultivation operation.
So be careful if you think of planting your little seed that you bought legally…
Consumption and possession of cannabis in France
If the possession and the cultivation of the seeds can be subject to interpretation, the French law prohibits the use of cannabis with more or less severity: the simple use can lead to up to one year of imprisonment which can be accompanied or substituted for a fine of €3,750.
Possession or consumption of cannabis in a private or public place (in the street, in a bus, in your car on the public highway, in a bar, etc.) is strictly prohibited. No distinction is made between therapeutic or religious use.