Close to seventy (70) traditional cannabis cultivators in the North Leeward area were provided with a comprehensive update on the status of the medicinal cannabis industry on Tuesday.
MCA Chief Executive Officer Dr Jerrol Thompson updated the farmers on several issues including; the banking solution the MCA has found for the industry, seed to sale system, seed bank, lab testing facility, the importance of good agricultural practices and having a top-quality product.
He also presented an update on the issue of lands for cultivators who do not have their own. Plans are afoot to make available several acres of crown land to cultivators who do not own lands.
The farmers for their part, were vocal particularly about the question of when the amnesty would be declared. The Cannabis Cultivation (Amnesty) Act, provides for the granting of an amnesty for a specific time period to persons engaged in the cultivation of cannabis, contrary to the provisions of Section 8 of the Drug (Prevention of Misuse) Act, who may otherwise be liable to prosecution.
During such time, persons will be able to sell cannabis that they already have on hand to an MCA licenced investor.
The MCA has reassured the cultivators that the amnesty will be declared when the Authority is satisfied that all the necessary conditions are in place to facilitate this process.
Tuesday’s meeting formed part of the MCA’s ongoing and continuous efforts to engage traditional cannabis cultivators to ensure that they become major players in the licit medicinal marijuana industry in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Similar sessions are planned for the Windward side of the island.