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Cannabis cultivation associations - what you need to know

The government draft of August 16, 2023 of the Cannabis Act (CanG) enables the establishment of cannabis cultivation associations, also known as Cannabis Social Clubs (CSC). The aim of the government draft is to create a legal framework for the regulation of cannabis use in Germany. The draft is based on the 2-pillar cornerstone paper and implements the 1st pillar on private and communal, non-commercial home cultivation for adults for personal consumption.

The draft allows the establishment of non-commercial growers' associations, which may grow, with the active participation of the members, cannabis for the consumption of their members. However, joint consumption in the associations is to be prohibited. The same applies to the private distribution of cannabis.

The aim of the association is, therefore, the communal cultivation of cannabis for the personal use of its members under legal conditions to the exclusion of the public.

The requirements for growers' associations and cooperatives

  1. Official permissions: In addition to entry in the register of associations/cooperatives, the establishment of a growers' association also requires official permissions regarding quantity, quality, child and youth protection requirements.
  2. Restrictions on distribution: The distribution of cannabis for consumption is only permitted to members of legal age who are resident or ordinarily resident in Germany. Upper limits apply to both the quantity of cannabis and the THC concentration.
  3. Advertising ban: There is a general ban on advertising and sponsorship.
  4. Protective measures and prevention: The growers' associations must implement information and advisory measures through prevention officers with specialist knowledge and has to cooperate with local addiction advice centers.
  5. Membership: Growers' associations may have a maximum of 500 members who are resident or ordinarily resident in Germany and are of legal age.
  6. Public consumption of cannabis: Consumption is not permitted within a distance of up to 200 meters from the entrance area of cultivation associations.

From the idea of a cannabis social club to an association – a guide to founding one

  1. Seven founding members: Seven people are required to found the association.
  2. Founding meeting: The association is founded in a meeting. The association draws up its own statutes, adapted to its needs, and records the resolutions. These minutes must contain certain details, e.g. the place and date of the meeting, the names of the chairperson and secretary, the resolutions passed and the elected board members.
  3. Registration of the association: The elected board has to enter the association in the register of associations at a local notary's office; this requires the presentation of identity documents, founding minutes, and articles of association. The local court checks the compatibility of the articles of association with German law of associations - it is therefore advisable to consult a legal expert, especially when it comes to articles of association. After a successful check, your association is a registered association (e.V.).

SKW Schwarz has a team of first-class legal experts who specialize in the Cannabis Act and all related aspects. In addition, SKW Schwarz has many years of experience in the field of corporate law and in the establishment of associations and cooperatives and can assist you in obtaining the necessary state license.


Margret Knitter

Margret Knitter


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Nicole Wolf-Thomann

Nicole Wolf-Thomann


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