Subst Use Misuse. 2022 Apr 5:1-9. doi: 10.1080/10826084.2022.2058707. Online ahead of print.
Objective: This study examines the role of cannabis policy in how cannabis users obtain and purchase cannabis. Methods: A survey was conducted in the Dutch coffeeshops among current cannabis users (n = 1255) aged 18-40 from seven European countries with different cannabis policies. This study investigated whether acquisition methods and supply sources were associated with national cannabis policy, controlling for gender, age, and frequency of use. Results: Cross-national differences notwithstanding, cannabis was easily available to current cannabis users in Europe. Within and across countries, users acquired cannabis in various ways and buyers purchased it from various sources, representing a mixture of open, closed, and semi-open retail markets. Buying cannabis was the most common method of acquisition. Among participants who reported buying their cannabis (n = 929), buying from friends was the most common source of supply, followed by street dealers, home dealers, and delivery services. The vast majority of Dutch participants reported buying cannabis from coffeeshops. Contrariwise, French buyers were more likely to buy cannabis from street dealers and delivery services, and Greek buyers to buy it from home dealers and friends. Overall, the Internet played a marginal role in purchasing cannabis. Conclusion: Our findings confirm the significant role of social supply across Europe. Although cross-national differences were rather common in cannabis acquisition and supply, yet they were not unidirectionally linked with the punitiveness of national cannabis policy. Findings suggest a differentiated normalization of the cannabis retail market, with users often preferring to buy cannabis in a regulated or legal market.
Source: ncbi 2