It is a momentous occasion for many involved in the legal highs industry, including New Zealands ‘godfather’ of party pills, Matt Bowden.
Legal Highs companies have received their interim licences to legally import, research, manufacture, distribute and retail legal highs in NZ.
Up to 60 products have been submitted by manufactures and distributors of legal highs, to the Ministry of Health, for interim government approval.
According to some in the industry, “it is likely that not all of these applications may make the cut” – but for those that do, it is the first time in history, that a legal, recreational synthetic cannabis replacement has been licenced to be sold to customers that simply want to get ‘high’.
Matt Bowden, today posted an image on his Facebook page of him holding up licences for ‘Stargate Operations Limited’, commenting; “Significant moment for me. Permission slips for manufacture, importation and research of psychoactives. Testament to believing for the impossible. I just kept believing one day there would be such a license and visualising until it existed and they issued them. Thank You Divine Creator, Ministry of Health & everybody who believed with me and also to those who told me I was crazy and this would not happen!”
There are still many hurdles to overcome, with full regulations and standards yet to be set by the government. Exactly what constitutes a ‘low risk’ product, fit for human consumption is still undergoing review by health and addiction professionals, but it is certainly a step in the right direction for those that long believed the 40 year old “war on drugs” was a dismal failure.
New Zealand is paving the way for a new kind of recreational drug market, free from the lawlessness of the underworld, and toward a taxable, regulated, legitimate market that the Alcohol Industry has enjoyed since the end of prohibition.