However, there are basic principles that affect all Cannabis Social Clubs:
Cannabis Social Clubs are a non-profit association. The financial benefits that may be obtained are used to promote the goals of the association, and are not distributed among the members. Cannabis Social Clubs aim to generate legal employment and produce goods and services in a taxable way.
Cannabis Social Clubs are willing to engage in any kind of dialogue with authorities, and implement an active policy to invite authorities to this dialogue.
Cannabis Social Clubs only use methods of cultivation that meet the standards of organic agriculture. They develop an effective policy of prevention of problematic use of cannabis and promote safe and responsible use. This includes providing members with factual information on cannabis/hemp. Associations also elaborate research the health aspects of the cannabis that they produce and inform their members on the results of this research.
Cannabis Social Clubs are legally registered associations and maintain a record of their annual activities, which are easily consultable by members of the club or authorities. This includes financial accountability, an (anonymized) registration of members and their consumption, and an (anonymized) registration of production.
The supply is organised in order to meet the demand of the members, not vice versa.
Due to the lack of a legal framework with regards to cannabis cultivation for personal use, cannabis consumers throughout Europe have initiated a model of regulation and control.
This model, called the Cannabis Social Club, aims to prevent cannabis consumers from being involved in illegal activities and assures that certain requirements concerning public health and safety are being met. Cannabis Social Clubs (CSC) are registered, non-profit associations, that are formed by legal adults who consume cannabis. They can be set up legally in any country where cultivation of personal amounts of cannabis has been decriminalized. According to article 12 of the Charter of Fundamental Human Rights of the European Union, “everyone has the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association at all levels”.
Cannabis Social Clubs Legislation requires that clubs organise their cannabis cultivation based on the exact amount of the yearly private consumption of its members. This amount may be increased with a reasonable buffer to counter the risk of failed harvest, theft, and provide for ‘emergency stash’ for people who consume cannabis for medicinal reasons. The internal rules of a CSC include a protocol about the management of this eventual surplus.
The methods of cultivation, post-harvest treatment etc. shall meet up to the standards of biological agriculture with sustainable use of natural resources. Inspections are also carried out randomly by representatives of the association, to verify the location, safety measures and estimated volume of production.
Cannabis Social Clubs apply an active policy of prevention of harms and risks in order to promote safer methods of consumption of cannabis by its members.
N.B. Cannabis Social Clubs take a comprehensive written record of consumption made by their members from collective farming. In this register personal data are ensured at all times. There will be an upper limit on the amounts that members may receive, in order to avoid the possibility of facilitating the use of third parties.
Cannabis Social Clubs Legislation foresees transparency, democracy and non-profitability. They function as an association, with complete openness about financial arrangements to their members, so the members can see how the costs are calculated and how money is spent. CSC’s organize a general assembly at least once a year, where annual reports are discussed and approved.
Cannabis Social Clubs may decide to employ staff members, who can receive reasonable remuneration. Thus they contribute to the creation of employment, economic re-activation and savings on the budget for law enforcement.
Before becoming member of a Cannabis Social Club, the applicant must state that he/she is a ludic user of cannabis, or provide a medical report stating the diagnosis, to check that the person is diagnosed with a disease for which the use of cannabis is indicated, according to the regularly published lists by the International Association for Cannabis as Medicine (IACM).
Unlike cannabis distributors who operate on the illegal market, Cannabis Social Clubs are willing to enter into dialogue with authorities to provide insight in their working methods in order to create a legal regulation of cannabis. Local authorities should have an interest in such a regulation, which will enable them to control the CSC’s to ensure their transparent and safe way of working; thus with helping to prevent the access of minors to cannabis, reduce public expenditure and generate tax revenue.
Cannabis Social Clubs have an interest in such a regulation as it will ensure the legal status of their organisation and its activities.