Although cannabis and Cannabidiol are medically and/or recreationally legal in many U.S. states, Mexico operates a bit differently. In particular, Mexico decriminalized the personal use and possession of five grams of cannabis in 2009. Then, last year, they legalized medical cannabis. However, the country’s medical cannabis law is quite strict, especially because Cannabidiol oil must contain less than one percent THC. Nonetheless, currently, Mexico is working to improve and properly transition into a federal medical cannabis program. Even though this program is a work in progress, CBD is viewed as a supplement in Mexico. Since CBD is non-psychoactive, Mexico’s lawmakers have become more lenient with citizens consuming it.
Views on Cannabidiol in Mexico
Even though Mexico continues to work on their medical cannabis program, Cannabidiol is viewed differently by lawmakers. Due to CBD’s variety of properties, it’s becoming more acceptable for people to consume this cannabinoid. Mexico’s lawmakers have become so lenient that CBD may become as common as traditional vitamins and minerals.
Mexico’s government understands this cannabinoid and its potential. This has led to them permitting citizens to consume large quantities of CBD, if they see fit. Even though cannabis is viewed as a drug by many governments and authority figures, CBD isn’t. CBD doesn’t cognitively impair users, nor does it deliver psychoactive effects. Thus, in Mexico, CBD is viewed as a supplement rather than a drug. The Mexican government understands this distinction, which is why CBD is viewed and treated differently. Due to CBD’s potential benefits, Mexico’s government wants to give their citizens the opportunity to consume this compound.
Background of Mexico’s Medical Cannabis Program
Moreover, last year, Mexico’s government moved towards legalizing medical cannabis. On June 19th of 2017, Mexico’s President, Enrique Peña Nieto signed a cannabis cultivation bill into law. This law focused on the cultivation, production, and usage of medical cannabis products that contain less than one percent THC. Despite last year’s legal move regarding cannabis, access to CBD and other cannabis products are limited. However, according to Raul Elizalde, the President of HempMeds Latin America, there’s hope when it comes to CBD accessibility in Mexico. Specifically, he mentioned that Mexico’s new law will allow producers to begin incorporating CBD into everyday health products.
In addition, Raul Elizalde went on to state the following about this recent transition:
“A good point about this regulation in Mexico is that any product with a THC concentration higher than 1 percent can still be registered with the government and sold as a prescription. But, the best part is the cannabinoids with below 1 percent THC content can be in medicine, supplements, lotions, food, anything. This is very, very good for our country, and I think we’re one of the very first in the world to take that path.”
Mexico’s government understands the potential of this cannabinoid. Therefore, they’re striving to make CBD more accessible to their citizens. To this day, in Mexico, medical cannabis patients continue to be stigmatized for consuming this alternative form of medicine. However, the stigma is slowly disappearing and becoming less intense.
Reasons Why CBD is Viewed as a Supplement in Mexico
In general, there’s a clear distinction between medical and recreational cannabis and the usage of Cannabidiol. HempMeds’ President Elizalde stated the following about CBD usage and its classification as a supplement in Mexico: “Nobody buys CBD to get high, nobody buys it to try to abuse it, and the only thing that will happen if it’s scheduled as a controlled substance is that it will become a black-market drug. But, it’s not a drug. It’s a supplement.”
In the future, Mexico and HempMeds Latin America will have more medicines that contain CBD. However, it won’t be limited to only medicines. Instead, CBD will be sold in the form of lotions, supplements, and vitamins like Vitamin C. This way, people can have more access to natural forms. With time, in Mexico, CBD will be treated like over-the-counter vitamins instead of as a drug.
Regulation of CBD
On another note, the regulation of CBD as a medicine would limit the quantity of products out there for people to purchase. Also, most likely, only one or two pharmaceutical companies will be able to sell CBD as a medicine by prescription. Currently, Poway-based Medical Marijuana Inc. is the only company that allows Mexicans to get legal permits to import CBD and CBD products with a doctor’s prescription.
Since medical cannabis and CBD products are still relatively limited in Mexico, California’s recent legalization of recreational cannabis had an impact on Mexican citizens. Specifically, California’s legalization change affected many Mexicans who reside near the border. Numerous Mexicans take advantage of California’s simpler access to different cannabis products.
Mexico’s Drug Policy Steps Moving Forward
Moving forward, President Elizalde and many others believe that Mexico will successfully foster a thriving medicinal and recreational cannabis marketplace. Many people are also hopeful that Mexico will begin fixing decades of damage caused by the cross-border drug war. Last year, Mexico’s President expressed that their country’s drug policy failed. Recently, though, Mexico elected a new President, Andrés Manuel López Obrador. He will oversee regulations and different rules regarding Mexico’s medical cannabis law and CBD accessibility. From here, the new President revealed a plan that would change Mexico’s drug strategy in significant ways.
Furthermore, Olga Sanchez is the President’s proposed interior minister. She has many ideas for drug policy changes. This starts with attacking the causes of poverty, creating truth commissions, and giving scholarships to the youth to help get them out of the drug scene. Overall, Mexico’s medical cannabis program is still a work in progress. However, since CBD is viewed as a supplement, there’s a higher likelihood of forms of CBD being more accessible for medical purposes.
Stay tuned to see the progress Mexico makes in the weeks and months to come. Also, join us in witnessing the changes Mexico makes to help their citizens, especially those with various diseases and ailments.