MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay — As this country’s remarkable legal marijuana experiment continues to unfold, an unexpected detail has emerged: It could cost more for cancer patients to buy weed for pain relief than for plain old stoners getting high just for fun.
Citing Uruguay’s drug czar Julio Calzada, El Observador newspaperVREPORTED on Feb. 6 that medical marijuana will cost more than recreational weed.
A National Drug Council spokesman confirmed on Wednesday that cannabis grown in Uruguay for medicinal uses — like treating pain and nausea caused by chemotherapy, or helping boost appetites for HIV/AIDS patients — will cost more than recreational pot.
The reason: Medical marijuana will be grown separately from the recreational type, by different companies. It will likely have higher levels of tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, the plant’s chemical compound that makes users high, and will be grown under stricter controls than pot grown purely for fun.