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Article
Publication date: 4 June 2018

Chris Wilkins, Sharon Sznitman, Tom Decorte, Pekka Hakkarainen and Simon Lenton

The purpose of this paper is to explore the characteristics of small-scale cannabis cultivation in New Zealand and Israel.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the characteristics of small-scale cannabis cultivation in New Zealand and Israel.

Design/methodology/approach

An online survey of predominantly small-scale cannabis cultivators had previously been conducted in 11 countries in 2012/2013. The same core online survey was subsequently conducted in New Zealand and Israel in 2016/2017, and comparisons made with the original 11 countries.

Findings

Only around one third of the New Zealand and Israeli cannabis growers had sold cannabis, and the majority of these did so only to cover the costs of cultivation. The median number of cannabis plants cultivated per crop by the New Zealand and Israeli growers was five and two, respectively. The leading reasons provided for growing cannabis by both the New Zealand and Israeli growers were to provide cannabis for personal use and to share with others. A higher proportion of New Zealand than Israeli growers reported growing cannabis for medicinal reasons. A total of 16 per cent of the New Zealand and 17 per cent of Israeli growers had come into contact with the police due to their cannabis cultivation. The findings suggest small-scale cannabis cultivation in New Zealand and Israel is largely a means of “social supply” of cannabis, and this is consistent with the findings from the original 11 countries. The higher incidence of growing cannabis for medicinal purposes in New Zealand may reflect the limited official access to medical cannabis. Significant minorities of small-scale cannabis growers in both countries had contact with police, putting them at risk of the negative consequences of a criminal conviction.

Originality/value

To date, the research into cannabis cultivation has largely consisted of studies of individual countries. However, given the global popularity of cannabis use, and the recent spread of cannabis cultivation to countries that traditionally have not produced cannabis, via utilisation of indoor growing techniques, there is now a strong case for international comparative research. Following the success of the surveys in the original 11 countries, New Zealand and Israeli members of the Global Cannabis Cultivation Research Consortium international collaboration chose to undertake surveys in their own countries in 2016/2017.

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. 18 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 21 November 2019

Sharon R. Sznitman, Monica J. Barratt, Tom Decorte, Pekka Hakkarainen, Simon Lenton, Gary Potter, Bernd Werse and Chris Wilkins

It is conceivable that cannabis cultivators who grow for medical purposes aim to improve the therapeutic index of their cannabis by attempting to produce particular…

Abstract

Purpose

It is conceivable that cannabis cultivators who grow for medical purposes aim to improve the therapeutic index of their cannabis by attempting to produce particular concentrations of CBD and/or THC. The purpose of this paper is to examine whether small-scale medical cannabis growers differ from those growing for recreational reasons in terms of self-assessed concentrations of THC and CBD in the cannabis they grow.

Design/methodology/approach

Data collection was conducted online from a convenience sample of 268 cannabis growers visiting a popular Israeli cannabis internet forum. χ2 and Kruskal–Wallis H were used to test bivariate associations between medical and recreational cannabis cultivators in terms of self-assessed cannabinoid concentrations.

Findings

In total, 40 percent of cannabis growers reported that they grow for medical purposes. Medical cannabis growers were more likely to report that they thought they knew the cannabinoid concentrations of the cannabis they grew and they reported higher self-assessed concentrations of THC, but not CBD.

Originality/value

Compared to recreational growers, medical cannabis growers are more likely to strive to be informed in terms of the content of their cannabis. Medical growers may also be attempting to grow more potent THC but not CBD cannabis.

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. 19 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

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Article
Publication date: 4 December 2017

Charlotte De Kock and Tom Decorte

Possessing a strong ethnic identity and ethnic network are described in some epidemiological literature as moderating factors in the relation between perceived…

Abstract

Purpose

Possessing a strong ethnic identity and ethnic network are described in some epidemiological literature as moderating factors in the relation between perceived discrimination and varying types of substance use in people with a migration background (PMB). The purpose of this paper is to qualitatively explore problem use, discrimination, ethnic identity and social networks in a small purposive sample of users with a Turkish and Eastern European migration background in Ghent, Belgium.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors present data retrieved within the framework of a qualitative community-based participatory research study that primarily aims to understand the nature of substance use in PMB. In the secondary analysis, the authors focus on a sub-study examining substance use by people with a Turkish (n=55) and Eastern European (n=62) migration background and explore how individuals perceive discrimination, ethnic identity and (ethnic) social networks in 117 qualitative interviews.

Findings

Almost all the respondents in this study reported perceived (inter-)ethnic discrimination. The authors establish that problem users in this study have a complex but albeit weak sense of ethnic identity nor do they have a strong ethnic network. This, in combination with perceived discrimination, is a risk factor for continued problem substance use and may hamper recovery related to problem use.

Originality/value

This article intends to lay the groundwork for future research that should focus more on longitudinally studying the intertwined relation between problem use, discrimination, ethnic identity and especially social instead of solely ethnic networks, their complex nature as well as their relation to recovery processes among persons with a migration background.

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. 17 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 2007

Tom Decorte

Objective. The objective of this study was to examine practices and policies in place for the provision of targeted prevention and treatment of cocaine and Amphetamine…

Abstract

Objective. The objective of this study was to examine practices and policies in place for the provision of targeted prevention and treatment of cocaine and Amphetamine Type Stimulant (ATS) users in prison in nine European countries. Methodology. Across nine European member states (Belgium, the Netherlands, Czech Republic, Lithuania, Slovenia, Sweden, Malta, Ireland and Portugal), interviews were conducted with ministerial representatives and professionals (i.e. service providers and security officials) working in prisons and a total of 16 focus groups with a total of 125 prisoners. Results. The use of stimulants in prison is associated with aggression and violence, financial problems, and psychological and physical problems in prisoners (depression, anxiety and psychological craving). Both security and healthcare staff in prison often feel ill‐equipped to deal with stimulant‐related problems, leading to a lack of equivalence of care for stimulant users in prison, therefore the variety and quality of drug services outside is not reflected sufficiently inside prison. There is a need for more specific product information and harm reduction material on stimulants, for clear guidelines for the management of acute stimulant intoxication and stimulant withdrawal, for structural adjustments to improve potential diagnosis of personality and psychiatric disorders, for more non‐pharmacological treatment strategies and more opportunities for prisoners to engage in purposeful activities.

Details

International Journal of Prisoner Health, vol. 3 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1744-9200

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Article
Publication date: 30 November 2012

Monica J. Barratt, Martin Bouchard, Tom Decorte, Vibeke Asmussen Frank, Pekka Hakkarainen, Simon Lenton, Aili Malm, Holly Nguyen and Gary R. Potter

Unlike other plant‐based drugs, cannabis is increasingly grown within the country of consumption, requires minimal processing before consumption, and can be easily grown…

Abstract

Purpose

Unlike other plant‐based drugs, cannabis is increasingly grown within the country of consumption, requires minimal processing before consumption, and can be easily grown almost anywhere using indoor or outdoor cultivation techniques. Developments in agronomic technologies have led to global growth in domestic cultivation, both by cannabis users for self‐ and social‐supply, and by more commercially‐oriented growers. Cross‐national research is needed to better understand who is involved in domestic cultivation, the diversity in cultivation practices and motivations, and cultivators' interaction with the criminal justice system and cannabis control policies.

Design/methodology/approach

The article introduces the Global Cannabis Cultivation Research Consortium (GCCRC), describes its evolution and aims, and outlines the methodology of its ongoing cross‐national online survey of cannabis cultivation.

Findings

Despite differing national contexts, the GCCRC successfully developed a core questionnaire to be used in different countries. It accommodates varying research interests through the addition of optional survey sections. The benefits to forming an international consortium to conduct web‐based survey research include the sharing of expertise, recruitment efforts and problem‐solving.

Research limitations/implications

The article discusses the limitations of using non‐representative online sampling and the strategies used to increase validity.

Originality/value

The GCCRC is conducting the largest cross‐national study of domestic cannabis cultivation to date. The aim is not only to better understand patterns of cannabis cultivation and how they differ between countries but also to build upon online engagement methodology with hidden populations.

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. 12 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

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Article
Publication date: 9 March 2012

Marije Wouters Bonger

Abstract

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

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Book part
Publication date: 15 October 2018

Tom Blickman

This chapter looks at the past, present and future of international cannabis control required by the UN drug control conventions in the post-2016 United Nations General…

Abstract

This chapter looks at the past, present and future of international cannabis control required by the UN drug control conventions in the post-2016 United Nations General Assembly Special Session era with an eye on the next High Level Ministerial Segment (HLMS) at the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs in 2019, and beyond. From a policy analysis perspective, the author meanders through the increasing tendency to legally regulate recreational cannabis markets notwithstanding the obligation enshrined in the UN drug control conventions to limit cannabis exclusively for ‘medical and scientific’ purposes. Taking into account relevant national and international developments, the chapter describes how the growing discomfort with the status of cannabis and the prohibitive and punitive approach stemming from the international drug control regime went through a process from soft to hard defections of the treaty obligations. The case of the Netherlands demonstrates the difficulty faced by reform-minded states in reconciling their wish for a different cannabis control mechanism with their obligations under international law, resulting in an incomplete regulation of its coffee-shop system, where small amounts of cannabis are tolerated for sale, but where the illicit supply to the shops remained unregulated. Subsequent more wide-ranging reforms to regulate cannabis from seed to sale in Uruguay, several US States and – in 2018 – in Canada, are clearly violating the obligations of the UN drug control conventions. Nevertheless, the HLMS will likely leave the elephant in the room untouched. The emerging paradigm shift regarding cannabis shows that a modernisation of the UN drug control regime is long overdue. This chapter discusses some of the options available.

Details

Collapse of the Global Order on Drugs: From UNGASS 2016 to Review 2019
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78756-488-6

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Article
Publication date: 4 June 2018

Melissa Bone and Greg de Hoedt

The purpose of this paper is to document a leading UK cannabis activist’s efforts to bring about policy change and to convey his human story as a medical consumer. The…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to document a leading UK cannabis activist’s efforts to bring about policy change and to convey his human story as a medical consumer. The paper contends that it is not enough to present evidence-based policies to effect change in drug policy, it is also vital to tell human stories, which people can relate to, in order to develop narratives which speak to people’s values.

Design/methodology/approach

An in depth, unstructured interview was conducted between Dr Melissa Bone and Cannabis Activist, Greg de Hoedt in December 2017. The interview was recorded, transcribed and formed the basis of the paper, which was co-edited and co-created by both authors.

Findings

The paper charts Greg’s journey from being a cannabis consumer – to being diagnosed with Crohn’s – to being a cannabis activist. The paper interweaves a drug policy discussion with a personal narrative. It connects unique insights into Greg’s life with the broader forces and institutions which influence cannabis policy at a local, national and international level.

Originality/value

Incorporating Greg’s personal narrative within an academic platform integrates his experiential knowledge into the “expert” evidence base. Alongside the potential of personal narratives to facilitate the production of knowledge, Greg’s emotive story could help to shape the public’s perception of cannabis, which could subsequently influence policy.

Details

Drugs and Alcohol Today, vol. 18 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1745-9265

Keywords

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