Nestled between the Indian and Pacific oceans is the largest island country on the planet – Indonesia. Home to more than 240 million people, the sun-drenched archipelago is rich in culture, brimming with nature and suffused with a culinary scene that rivals most. If there is one thing that the Southeast Asian country is missing, however, it’s weed.
The Indonesian government could be leaving some serious money on the table if it doesn’t follow in Thailand’s footsteps; medical cannabis was legalized in the Kingdom of Thailand on December 26, 2018. Predicted to pull in US$661 million by 2024, the industry is off to a pretty great start. So much so, that Thai cannabis advocates are now pushing for recreational legalization, too.
Cannabis developments are also happening elsewhere throughout Asia; Weed may be illegal in China, but Chinese CBD (cannabidiol) producers are supplying overseas buyers with the non-psychoactive substance, which could earn the continent US$15 billion by 2024; In September, the Indian government announced it will allow medical cannabis research for the first time; Although illegal in Singapore, industrial cannabis cultivation company CannAcubed is growing hemp there. Hemp is cannabis that contains 0.3% (or less) of the psychoactive compound THC (tetrahydrocannabinol).
Taking the above into account, Indonesia is clearly missing out on the “Green Rush” that is spreading across much of Asia. However, in spite of strict prohibition, all hope is not lost for cannabis reform in Indonesia. A recent interview that I conducted with the founder and team members of a pro-cannabis movement known as ‘LGN’ leads me to believe that legal weed could be on the horizon… someday, at least.
What is the LGN cannabis movement in Indonesia?
Short for ‘Lingkar Ganja Nusantara’ – which translates to ‘Cannabis Circle Archipelago’ in English – LGN is a prominent group working towards cannabis reform in Indonesia. Comprised of approximately 55 members, @LGN_id has garnered over 271,000 Instagram followers since the group was founded in 2010.
Since its inception, the LGN team have collectively hosted and/or attended over 100 events. The well-known group is taking strides towards accomplishing the following missions throughout Indonesia:
To be the center of research and education of Indonesian cannabis culture. To fight for the rights to cultivate, consume, and preserve cannabis for every Indonesian citizen, as well as build intellectual movement that is harmonious with natural principles. To develop a sustainable social enterprise ecosystem.
“We hope that