After The Haze Club’s bust last year, the concept of a Cannabis Grow Club started gaining some popularity. Their lawyers argue that this model is in complete compliance with the Privacy Judgement of 2018, which states that an adult is allowed to cultivate, possess and consume Cannabis in a private place. The Grow Club model attempts to address shortfalls and gaps, left by the Privacy Judgement and it recognises that not every South African may have the means, time, space or knowledge to cultivate Cannabis. So, how does it look on the Grow Club Model’s side?
The first thing to note is that the model is, just like any other Dagga Private Club model, very admin-intensive, to ensure that the demand and supply of the Club is carefully planned for. It also requires other tools like barcoding and tracking systems, closely managed division of space and frequent communication with the member.
To ensure that the model subscribes to the Privacy Judgement’s requirements, the Grow Club model communicates and agrees to strict contractual terms with the member. The contract entails a lease agreement for the space that the member’s Cannabis plant will be cultivated in. The member agrees to cede their right to growing Cannabis privately, over to the Club, who then practices this right on the member’s behalf. The member is allocated a member number once all the paperwork has been signed.
The member then needs to supply their own clone or seed to the Club. The Club is not allowed to purchase seeds on behalf of their members. However, members may donate their own seeds or clones of their strains to the Club and make it available to other members. This way the Grow Club can ensure that all aspects of the cultivation process of Cannabis remains within the Club.
Every member is allocated a space, which is clearly measured out, marked and numbered. The member’s allocated space is the only space in which their Cannabis can be consumed. Practically, it can work as simply as making markings on the floor with tape and numbering it in accordance with the member’s number. Every allocated space is limited to one plant only, in other words, only one plant per block.
So, to summarize, the member provides the clone or seed, it is placed in their allocated grow space, the Club is responsible for the cultivation process, while the member waits for their plant to mature, flower and be harvested. Once the plant is harvested, the Grow Club will trim and package the plant and return all plant matter, including roots, stems and stalks, to the member.
Specific details to pay attention to is the fact that the Club must be able to predict or estimate how much Cannabis it will harvest for the member. The member also needs to be frequently updated on their plant and its progress, with proof of these conversations taking place. It would also need to invest in a pretty sturdy barcode system, to enable the Club to manage the necessary information and keep track of which plant belongs to which member. It would be wise to put limitations in place, like allowing every member to grow 2 plants only, concurrently.
The Grow Club Model is definitely a viable one and in our opinion, the strictest way to comprehensively apply the Privacy Judgement to your Dagga Private Club. In the same breath, we’d like to remind you that The Haze Club will be in court this year, because the police and government do not have the answers about Dagga Private Clubs yet. So, keep it quiet, keep it private and remember – administration is key!