In recent times, there has been a massive global push to get cannabis – particularly medicinal cannabis – legalized. This change is something that is also being seen down under in Australia, with more and more pressure being placed on the Australian government to implement changes in the law that would allow for medicinal and recreational cannabis to be given more leniency for 2020. And, as of January 31st, 2020, Canberra became the first Australian city to legalize the use of recreational cannabis in Australia.
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Legalities of Cannabis Use in Australia
Cannabis – even saying the word is something that can cause a lot of uproar and debate nowadays, and so, it can seem somewhat hard to think of a time when cannabis wasn’t restricted in the ways that it is today. However, this level of control over the cannabis industry was not always the case. In fact, there was a time when the use of cannabis and its derivatives, all around the world, was not so highly frowned upon as it seems to be today.
At around the start of the 20th century, cannabis use was not criminalized to begin with; it was only in 1924, at the time of the Geneva Convention on Opium and Other Drugs, that steps were taken to begin restricting cannabis purchase and consumption.
This would remain the stance firmly until the 1970s, at which point the possibility of decriminalizing cannabis would be raised at the 1978 New South Wales Joint Parliamentary Committee on Drugs. Unfortunately, though, no changes would be seen at this time. Instead, it was deemed that the decriminalization of cannabis would do more harm than it would do good and that the change would go against the United Nations policies, and so the rules remained in place which restricted and criminalized the use of cannabis for recreational and medicinal purposes alike.
It is only in recent years, then, that real progress has been seen regarding the legalization of cannabis in Australia. The use of medicinal cannabis was legalized in 2016 at the federal level, which would serve to be a huge turning point for the movement. Following on from this, in 2017, the Food Standards Australia and New Zealand would then go on to allow the use of hemp, containing extremely low levels of THC (the chemical compound responsible for cannabis’ psychedelic effects), as being food which can legally be consumed by the Australian population.
Primarily fronted by the Greens, despite being opposed by the Minister for Health, the movement eventually saw the rules being loosed at the turn of the decade for Canberra residents.
Legal Use of Cannabis in Australia
The use of cannabis in Australia is still very much limited, but changes are being seen which are making it easier for Australians to experience cannabis for their recreational or medicinal use. However, it is important to recognize that the use of cannabis in Australia is by no means ‘simple’ still; the use of marijuana is still federally illegal in Australia, despite it being the most widely used drug in the country.
The new ruling that was passed and brought into effect for the end of January 2020, means that Australian residents over the age of 18 years are now allowed to keep on their possession a small amount of dried cannabis (up to 50g). Furthermore, the cultivation of cannabis plants for personal use is now also allowed, with each individual in a household being allowed to grow up to two cannabis plants; there is a maximum limit here of four plants per household, which equates to two plants for 2 adults in the household. This is somewhat less generous than the original proposition which would have allowed each individual member of a household to cultivate up to 6 cannabis plants for their own use but is still a beneficial change for the cannabis industry. Moreover, the increased tax revenue derived from the sale of cannabis plants was intended to help fund drug eradication programs and provide support for those suffering from drug addictions and the like.
Medical marijuana use in Australia was legalized in 2016 for use by those individuals suffering from health conditions that require its use. These conditions are classed as being chronic and severe, such as for severe epilepsy and seizures. Furthermore, along the same lines of medicinal cannabis, the drug was also legalized for use in a scientific study environment; this was a pivotal change, as prior to this, researchers were severely limited in terms of conducting research into the drug and its effects.
Growing Cannabis in Australia
Though changes have been implemented in recent times to allow for cannabis to be cultivated, it is important to remember that cannabis is still federally illegal. Therefore, with the exception of Australian Capital Territories, the use of cannabis is still punishable as a Schedule 9 drug; the specific punishment varies from state and between territories but is often in the form of a fine. Moreover, the distribution of cannabis is still illegal across the country; cannabis seeds can be purchased for one’s own personal use, however, they cannot be resold and the harvest from the seeds, when mature, also cannot be distributed and is only to be used on a personal level.
Guide for Buying Cannabis Seeds in Australia
Cannabis seeds can now be legally purchased in Australia for one’s own use and consumption, but it is still important that you make sure you stick to the relevant laws that are in place. After all, with the exception of in the capital territories, cannabis growing and use is still prohibited, and so you should make sure that you do your research into your own state or territory to check whether you are legally entitled to grow your own personal cannabis plants or not.
When it comes to buying cannabis seeds, as well as making sure that you remain on the right side of the law, it is also important that you know what to look out for. There are many different seedbanks globally who will ship their products to Australia, but you need to make sure that you spend some time learning what makes a good seed bank so you can choose a seed bank who will be able to provide you with the high-quality cannabis seeds that you need to grow your own cannabis.
What to Look for in a Good Seed Bank?
There are a huge number of different factors that you should look for when choosing a seed bank from which to get your cannabis seeds. However, the most notable of these factors are summarised below:
- Seed quality and germination guarantees: when you buy seeds, it is safe to say that not all seeds will be of the same quality. Some will have been stored differently to others, which may impact on their quality and freshness as well as their ability to perform. Furthermore, some seeds may simply be genetically weaker than others. Understanding this will allow you to choose a seed bank that offers high-quality seeds that you can be confident in. Ideally, you may want to choose a seed bank that also offers a germination guarantee so that, should any seeds fail to germinate, you may be able to get a free replacement or a monetary refund.
- Strain selection: there are many different strains of cannabis seeds that you can choose between, and for a new cannabis grower, this can be quite a confusing position to be faced with. Indeed, it can seem hard to choose between all of these different strains!
- Make sure you do your research and find a strain that will provide you with the features you desire; for example, for medicinal cannabis growers, you will want a strain that is high in CBD content and low in THC. Not all seed banks offer the same strains and some seed banks will offer fewer or more choices than others. This may limit your choice if you choose a seed bank which only offers a few specialist strains, especially if these are not exactly what you are after, so try to choose a seed bank that has the strains you’re after – but be aware that seedbanks with huge numbers of strains likely do not grow these themselves and so seed quality could be variable.
- Payment options: Different seed banks will accept different payment options, so it’s important that you choose a seed bank that will accept the payment method that you want to use. The majority of seed banks will accept credit or debit card payments and cryptocurrency, with others sometimes accepting other methods too. Be wary of a seed bank that accepts Paypal, however; Paypal used to be an option for people buying cannabis seeds, but stricter actions against seed banks mean that very few now accept payments by Paypal.
- Delivery options: Most seed banks will offer their customers with discreet delivery options so that the contents of the package are not clear for people to see. Furthermore, you should also consider the cost of shipping and the delivery duration, as well as whether or not there are any options for stealth (or even guaranteed) shipping with your chosen seed bank.
- Reputation: Reputation is a key way of checking whether or not your chosen seed bank is trustworthy. Therefore, it is vital that you seek opinions from other cannabis growers before making a decision. There are many online review sites that have publicly available cannabis site reviews, as well as forums specifically for cannabis users where you can go to ask advice or opinions of your chosen seed bank.
Best Marijuana Seed Banks That Ship to Australia
There are so many different seedbanks out there these days that makes knowing where to start hard when sourcing your first cannabis seeds. With seed banks all around the world able to ship to Australia, it is important that you choose the right one for you. Our top two picks for the best seed banks that ship to Australia would be MSNL Seed Bank and Crop King Seeds.
MSNL Seed Bank is a highly popular seed bank that is well known for the high-quality seeds that it supplies. Though not an Australian seed bank themselves, they offer global shipping and so are a good option if you are looking for somewhere to source your cannabis seeds from.
Seed Quality and Germination (Full Review)
One of the most important factors to consider when choosing a seed bank is that of the seed quality and the germination rates. MSNL is well known for providing high-quality cannabis seeds, and this quality is largely due to the fact that the team originally sourced their foundation stock from F1 strains – making their seeds extra potent and high quality. Furthermore, as well as being genetically high quality, MSNL also tests every seed that they sell in their own laboratory setting to make sure that any visible signs of damage are not on the seeds, which helps to ensure that every seed has the best chance of establishing itself. Sadly, they do not actually offer a dedicated germination guarantee, however, so this should be considered just in case your seeds should fail to germinate.
The strain selection at MSNL Seed Bank is somewhat underwhelming; it’s not bad, however, there are not a huge number of different strains to choose from with this seed bank. This means that you might be a little more limited in terms of choice when compared to some other seed banks. However, they do still offer auto-flowering and feminized seed strains alongside their standard seeds.
As well as implementing their own FAQ section to help new customers find their footing without having to go through the hassle of contacting a customer support member, MSNL also provides contact options to help support their customers. They can be contacted either by phone or online, and reviews of the team regularly report good experiences and rapid responses with the MSNL customer service team.
One of the biggest drawbacks of the MSNL Seed Bank is its payment methods. While they do accept card payments, they are only able to accept Mastercard payments – sorry, Visa users! However, they do also accept bank transfer payments or discounted Bitcoin payments (15% off for all Bitcoin purchases), which does provide an option around this.
As would be expected from a large and well-known seed bank such as MSNL, all seed orders are packaged discreetly and delivered using one of three different delivery options of standard delivery, stealth delivery, or guaranteed delivery. Buyers can choose which of these delivery options best suits them and their needs.
Refunds and Promotions
Unfortunately, the MSNL seed bank does not offer a germination guarantee on the seeds that they sell, which means if seeds do not germinate well then no refunds or replacements are available. However, they are generous with their promotions; free seeds are included with every order or seeds and a loyalty system ensures that customers get money back on their shopping to spend on future investments.
When it comes to reputation, having more reviews generally means that a seed bank or service provider is going to be more trustworthy – and MSNL tips the review count at over 10,000 on TrustPilot alone.
- Numerous promotions and discounts, plus loyalty schemes and bitcoin payment discounts
- Stealth shipping and guaranteed shipping are available
- All seeds are analyzed under a microscope for quality control purposes
- Somewhat limited strain selection, although auto-flowering and feminized strains are available
- No germination guarantees for seeds
Choosing a seed bank can seem hard, but Crop King Seeds is absolutely a seed bank that you should consider which delivers to Australia. Crop King Seeds is an old name in the cannabis seeds industry, making it a consideration when you’re looking for someone to buy from. Originally established in 2012, Crop King Seeds is based in Canada and offers a selection of their own specially created strains.
Seed Quality and Germination (Full Review)
The quality of seeds from Crop King Seeds is generally incredibly high, with the seeds being offered by this seed bank also being rare in terms of their genetics too. At the time of the seed bank’s establishment, the team behind it searched tirelessly for the rarest genetics in the cannabis seed world and this ensures that the seeds offered at Crop King Seeds today are also of very high quality. Furthermore, the team also offers a generous 80% germination guarantee policy, with refunds or replacements on offer should your seed order fail to hit this target.
Arguably, strain selection is where Crop King Seeds falls down the most. Crop King Seeds stocks about 40 different strains, including some top-ranking strains that have made bestseller lists and won awards in the past. These include strains such as White Cookies, Purple Kush and Dark Angel – all of which are well known among growers. So, if you’re after a seed bank with a wide array of choices, Crop King Seeds may not be for you – although their strain selection does include many industry favorites. They also offer a wide selection of medicinal, high CBD content strains.
For customers in Australia, the customer service at Crop King Seeds is best described as acceptable. The team replies to queries quickly and there are numerous contact methods that can be used, including a telephone call, sending a letter, live chat, email, and a contact us form on their website too. However, the team falls down slightly on the approachability of their representatives, who are often said to be blunt, unhelpful and somewhat unfriendly to speak to. The team performs better in Canada, where they have 200 physical stores; unfortunately, this is not a possibility in Australia considering the current restrictions on cannabis seeds around the country and in federal law.
Crop King Seeds offer a few different payment methods which are very popular among most cannabis seed buyers, including credit and debit cards and Bitcoin payment options. This means that they do not offer as many payment methods as some other teams.
Delivery times for seeds from this seed bank are well known for being a little longer than the norm. However, the team takes extra precautions to ensure that all seeds are tightly sealed in order to preserve their freshness during the delivery process. Free delivery is available on large orders, however, this is often not feasible for Australian buyers only purchasing a small number of seeds at a time.
Refund and Promotions
One area in which Crop King Seeds falls back on is its promotions, with the promotions that are on offer rarely being hugely enticing unless you were planning on buying the particular strain in question anyway. Their germination guarantee of 80% is welcome, though.
Crop King Seeds is an old seed bank and has a positive reputation in general among its past customers.
- Lots of high CBD strains, suitable for medicinal cannabis growers
- Germination guarantee of 80%
- Numerous contact options
- High quality, rare cannabis genetics
- Limited strain selection with just 40 strains
- Expensive seeds compared to some other seed banks
- Customer service is efficient but not always friendly
The changes to cannabis laws in Australia mean that more and more people are looking into growing their own cannabis for personal use. Current laws allow people over the age of 18 to grow two plants for their own use, up to a maximum of four plants per household, so long as they live in the Australian Capital Territory. However, if you want to try your hand at growing your own cannabis plants, it is imperative that you start off the right way – with the best cannabis seeds.