Spain’s Guardia Civil reported the confiscation of the largest haul of packaged cannabis ever found globally. Authorities said they seized more than 32 tons of cannabis, the equivalent of over one million plants which they estimate to have a street value of more than $65 million.
“Operation Jardines has concluded with the seizure of 32,370.2 kilograms of marijuana buds, the largest seizure of this substance, not only in Spain, but internationally. Its equivalence in complete plants would be approximately 1,100,000 specimens,” a police statement said on Saturday.
The group of 20 people the police arrested had “more than 32 tons of buds’ stored in the Spanish cities of Toledo, Ciudad Real, Valencia and Asturias which they sold “through a complex business network,” that involved sending the cannabis vacuum-packed throughout Spain, as well as to Switzerland, Holland, Germany and Belgium, and other European countries.
The Guardia said the 20 people, men and women, in the cannabis operation controlled the entire production and distribution through various “companies” which carried out different parts of the process – from buying the seeds, to growing and drying the plants, to packaging them and shipping them out.
Inacutado el mayor alijo de marihuana descubierto hasta el momento.
— Guardia Civil � (@guardiacivil) November 5, 2022
Cannabis In Spain
Recreational usage in Spain is decriminalized and permitted in private spaces, including the cultivation of a small number of cannabis plants if they are not visible from outside. There are roughly 700 cannabis clubs across Spain, with some requiring membership fees or exclusive invites to join. Given that supply and distribution remain illegal, this approach echoes the Dutch model.
Although many European countries have decriminalized small amounts of cannabis for recreational purposes, only one, Malta, has fully legalized it and Germany recently unveiled plans to legalize adult-use marijuana.
Canadian cannabis giants Tilray Brands Inc. TLRY and Aurora Cannabis Inc. ACB ACB are already well-positioned to benefit from legalization in Germany, a country with over 83 million people.
Spain, with its nearly 50 million population, is expected to allow the sale of medical marijuana in pharmacies by the end of this year.
Photo taken by the author.