Is Weed Legal In Denmark

Is weed legal in Denmark? Everything you need to know about marijuana use in Denmark

Denmark is one of the most liberal countries on the planet. It’s one of the friendliest destinations for LGBTQ+ people, and the locals have a relaxed approach to alcohol use. And unlike in many nations, sex isn’t a taboo subject. With all of this in mind, you might also find yourself asking: is weed legal in Denmark?

Marijuana and cannabis use in Denmark can get a little complicated. The famous (or infamous, depending on your stance) Freetown Christiania in Copenhagen was once known for its different approach to the drug, but things have since calmed down a bit.

Anyway, that’s enough of us talking. In this article, we’ll outline whether pot is legal in Denmark or not — from both a recreational and medical perspective. You’ll also find out what the future holds for the drug in Scandinavia’s southernmost country.

Do people use weed a lot in Denmark?

Despite being illegal in many countries, a lot of people around the world consume marijuana for recreational purposes. The drug is commonly seen as useful for having a good time with friends, and many people smoke weed on their own to relax.

Arguments that it’s not harmful aren’t entirely accurate, but that’s another topic of conversation and not what we’re here to discuss today.

Drugs aren’t more commonplace in Denmark than other countries, but they still exist and appeal to some. Cannabis is one of the most widely-used recreational drugs; according to Statista, 11% of people in the country said that they consumed weed within the last 12 months.

Weed in Denmark had seen an increase in use if that report is anything to go by, compared to the 1990s and 2000s. 10% of Danes said that they had used the drug within 12 months in 2000, while 7% mentioned the same in 1995.

Denmark has a strong drinking culture, but reports in recent years have suggested that many people in the country might be taking more of a preference for marijuana. In 2015, The Local — an English-language newspaper covering news in Denmark and various other European countries — reported interesting data from research conducted by Statens Institut for Folkesundhed.

The body, which is the Danish National Institute for Public Health, that experimentation with cannabis had increased among both men and women from 1996 until then. 50% of men in high school said that they had tried the drug, compared to 26% in 1996. For women, the percentage rose from 19% to 31%.

The institute’s research covered 70,000 youngsters in Denmark. From this, 22% of males said that they had smoked weed on at least 10 occasions; 6.8% of females said the same.

In the same article, weed consumption in Denmark was found to be significant in another report. The European Drug Report ranked the country as the top dog in Europe when it came to people experimenting with cannabis; 35.6% of individuals had done so at that time.

Is Weed Legal In Denmark

Is marijuana legal in Denmark for medical use?

As a country open to trying new things, marijuana in Denmark has been part of an interesting experiment in recent years. In 2018, the country began a four-year pilot looking at the possibility of using cannabis for medical purposes.

As this article on the Invest in Denmark website says:

Medical cannabis is an emerging industry that offers new research opportunities, economic benefits, and potential treatment options for patients. Since the launch of the Danish medical cannabis pilot program on 1 January 2018, the Danish ecosystem has attracted significant international investment, partnerships, and attention from researchers.”

The article continued later with the following:

As of mid-2021, over 40 companies have been granted permission to cultivate and handle medical cannabis as long as high standards of quality are maintained. Once companies are sufficiently prepared, moving into full commercial operations require inspections and licensing with and adherence to the highest EU-GMP standards in Europe.”

At the time of writing in March 2022, the pilot is entering its final phases. However, the signs look good for it to be a long-term thing — and Denmark has become one of Europe’s leading players in the medical marijuana space.

Is pot legal in Denmark for recreational use?

So far, we’ve covered a lot about weed in Denmark. You’ve discovered what Danes’ attitudes are toward the drug at the moment, in addition to potential future advances in the country’s medical cannabis space.

Your next question is probably: “Is weed legal in Denmark for recreational use?”, and this is the point that we’ll have to burst a few bubbles.

In short — no, you cannot use marijuana in Denmark for recreational purposes (by law, at least).

The possession and use of marijuana in the country are forbidden by law. Weed in Copenhagen is also not allowed, even if you smoke in Freetown Christiania.

Oddly enough, though, Denmark doesn’t have any laws that ban you from being high. If you find yourself around Freetown Christiania, or in other parts of Christianshavn, for that matter, it’s possible that you can smell marijuana.

If you were thinking about hopping over the bridge to Sweden to buy marijuana legally, you’re out of luck. Weed in Malmö and other parts of the country is forbidden by law.

Is Weed Legal In Denmark

Can you buy weed in Copenhagen?

While marijuana in Denmark isn’t legal for recreational use, you can still purchase weed in Copenhagen.

In recent years, many residents of Christiania have politely asked people to buy their marijuana elsewhere. You can still buy the drug within this enclave, but the trade isn’t as big as it once was.

If you purchase weed in Copenhagen, Christiania is arguably the safest place to do so. You’ll find various people selling the drug in this part of the city; if you decide to buy some, do so discreetly and don’t take pictures of the sellers.

One side note about photos: you’re not allowed to capture images on Pusher Street, and you’ll see signs asking you to adhere to this.

What are the consequences of possessing weed in Denmark?

Now that you know recreational weed in Denmark is illegal, it’s a good idea to cover the consequences that you face for possessing the drug. The punishment you’ll receive if the police find weed on your body depends on how much you have.

If you have less than 10kg of weed, you’ll usually receive a fine. However, you typically won’t face any punishment worse than that. Don’t bank on your lack of Danish skills saving you from paying that fine, though. 

Things become a little more problematic if you’re found with larger quantities of marijuana. If you’re found to have more than 10kg in your possession, you can face a lengthy jail sentence. Generally speaking, you’ll spend anywhere between 10 and 16 years behind bars.

Is recreational weed going to become legal in Denmark in the future?

While weed in Denmark is illegal for recreational use, it’s pretty clear that some people haven’t been deterred. Some countries have decriminalized drugs, with Portugal perhaps being the best-known example. The Netherlands is also well-known for its relaxed approach to recreational marijuana use.

So, could recreational weed become legal in Denmark in years to come?

Marijuana use in Denmark is a hot topic among the locals. You’ll find large levels of support for it, but at the same time, that enthusiasm is by no means universal. In 2016, Berlingske — one of the leading papers in the country — published research from Gallup.

In that survey, it was revealed that 45% of Danes asked said that they believe marijuana should become legal for recreational use. At the same time, 41% voiced opinions against this happening.

What do the politicians think, though?

In parliament, cannabis has received support in recent years. For example, The Local reported in 2018 that five of the country’s parties argued that the drug should be decriminalized. Those political groups came from both ends of the spectrum.

Bearing in mind how much it affects the general population, the best route for legalizing recreational marijuana in Denmark would probably be through a referendum. But at the time of writing, there has been no talk of such a thing happening.

So, using weed for recreational purposes looks set to remain illegal for the foreseeable future.

Is weed legal in Denmark? In short: no

Having reached the end of this article, you should now have the “Is weed legal in Denmark?” question answered. Despite being one of the most liberal countries on the planet and having a relaxed approach to most things, marijuana remains illegal for recreational use here.

But while weed isn’t legal, many locals have a relaxed approach to the drug. Even though you aren’t allowed to possess weed, you can get high. Moreover, you’re allowed to buy cannabis seeds — even though growing the drug isn’t allowed (though you’d have a tough time doing so, as the country’s climate isn’t conducive for this).

If you plan to visit Denmark purely to smoke marijuana, you’re probably better off looking elsewhere. However, you shouldn’t cancel a trip to the country altogether; you’ll still find plenty of fun things to do.

Do you want to relax in Denmark? You might want to choose the more natural way and get some sun and sand. The country has several excellent beaches, with clean water and plentiful facilities. Why not read our article about the best beaches in Denmark and book a summer getaway?

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