Uruguay was the first country to announce that it would be legalizing marijuana for adult use. That was almost four years ago, yet legal sales have yet to roll out. Reports are stating that will change in July when Uruguay starts selling marijuana to adults via pharmacies. Before you start booking your vacation to Uruguay, realize that marijuana sales will only be legal for Uruguay residents. Residents will be able to register with pharmacies starting May 2nd, and once legal sales begin, adults will be able to purchase up to 40 grams at a reported $1.30 per gram.
Whether or not Uruguay will be able to meet the July deadline will have to be seen. Uruguay has already experienced delays, so we will have to wait to see if there are any other delays before the first person actually makes a purchase. Canada has also been in the news a lot regarding national marijuana legalization. An announcement is expected this week that Canada will legalize marijuana next summer. Originally it was reported that Canada would legalize on July 1st, 2018, Canada Day, but it sounds like there is some push back in Canada and a strong desire to make the move prior to Canada Day. Per CBC.com:
With long-awaited marijuana legislation set to be announced next week, the federal government is having second thoughts about legalizing cannabis on Canada Day.
The Trudeau government still plans to go ahead with its plan to make weed legal for recreational use. But a senior government source says the initial target of July 1, 2018 as the implementation date will be changed to “on or before July 1, 2018.”
The change reflects some internal concerns over legalizing a recreational drug on the country’s birthday. Bill Blair, the Liberal government’s point man on pot, told the Canadian Press he wanted the focus of Canada Day to be Canada — not cannabis.
Theoretically it’s possible that Canada could see its first transaction for legal marijuana occur before Uruguay. I would assume that Canada would roll out sales as close to July 1, 2018 as possible, but it’s possible that it could occur well before that date, albeit not probable. Uruguay is farther along with the process, having already setup a distribution model that will start accepting registrations in less than a month. But, as I said before, Uruguay’s rollout has already experienced delays, so we will have to wait and see. Either way, it’s sound like there’s a good chance that Uruguay AND Canada will have legal marijuana sales occurring by the summer of 2018, which should have a profound impact on the rest of the Western Hemisphere, if not the entire planet.