Smoking Ban Could Close Cannabis Cafes

Discussion in 'Marijuana News' started by D9_THC, Jun 15, 2003.


    For the Netherlands' famous network of cannabis-peddling coffee shops the high times could be about to be stubbed out - for good.

    A tough new anti-smoking law due to take effect from January of next year is about to turn the Dutch work place into a smoke-free zone and coffee shops are not exempted.

    Under the new law every company in the country must ensure that their employees are not exposed to tobacco smoke. Lighting up a joint in one of 800 coffee shops therefore faces extinction from 2005.

    Coffee shops will still be allowed to sell joints but their customers will have to go outside to smoke. Unsurprisingly the country's marijuana retailers are not pleased. "We might as well just shut up shop," Dick Langereis, the manager of two Amsterdam coffee shops, told the daily Trouw. "Just let them try and enforce this in the Hague," added a man called Gilbert who runs a coffee shop in the city of Nijmegen.

    However a spokesman from the Dutch health ministry told the Guardian that the law will be rigorously policed.

    "Consumer authorities will carry out random spot checks," he said. "Coffee shops are just like any other companies - they will have to follow the law."

    Customers could scarcely believe their ears yesterday. "They've got to be out of their minds," said Annemiek van Royan, a regular at the Kashmir Lounge in Amsterdam. "The best part is coming here to relax. It makes my day."

    The first Dutch coffee shop opened in 1972 and although cannabis is technically illegal its use and sale has been tolerated ever since. "The point of going to a coffee shop is to smoke," said Arjan Roskam, chairman of the union of cannabis retailers. Some have floated the idea of heated outdoor terraces to get round the ban.

    "We only employ smokers," said Mr Langereis. "If you work for us you are a smoker and all our customers are smokers so this is just crazy."

    Coffee shops had a turnover of Euro 300m ( UKP220m ) in 1999, the latest year for which figures are available.

    Newshawk: JimmyG
    Pubdate: Thu, 29 May 2003
    Source: Guardian, The (UK)
    Copyright: 2003 Guardian Newspapers Limited
    Author: Andrew Osborn, The Guardian
    Bookmark: (Cannabis)
  2. What if you didnt put tobacco in your joint? Would you be able to smoke then, i bet they just star making people use like pipes so not tobacco or anything or maybe even vaporizer and can you take the weed home and smoke it?
  3. i don't think it matters if there's tobacco in the J or not. the fact is that coffee shops are places were people go to smoke. so obviously an employee isn't going to complain "i don't like my workplace it's too smokey".

    i think i speak for most sane people when i say that it's totally illogical not to make coffeeshops exempt from the law.

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