The CBD boom that has seen Switzerland become the CBD capital of Europe over the last year has now reached Austria, where next week the country’s very first CBD coffee shop will be opening.
Located in Graz, a medieval town in southern Austria, “Die Graslerei” is the brainchild of four young locals you have a passion for hemp. Following in the footsteps of neighbouring Switzerland – where there has been a huge surge in popularity of CBD-rich cannabis (or hemp as is called due to its low levels of psychoactive THC) – the coffee shop’s founders are hoping to capitalize on Europe’s burgeoning green-rush.
The coffee shop will sell cannabis flowers and hash that are 100% legal because all they contain less than 0.3% THC (the legal limit in Austria) and are from strains of so-called industrial hemp that are on an EU-approved list, making them completely legal to grow in the EU. Customers will be able to smoke their CBD hemp buds in the cafe while enjoying premium roasted coffee.
While it won’t get you ‘high’, the cannabis sold in the Graz coffee shop contains high levels of the active substance cannabidiol (CBD). Considered to be non-psychoactive, CBD has been shown to be anticonvulsant, anti-inflammatory, anxiolytic and anti-nausea.
Along with flowers, hash and other CBD-rich products, Die Graslerie will serve coffee, cakes and traditional cafe snacks. The Amsterdam-inspired CBD coffee shop follows similar openings in Switzerland, where less stringent rules allow for cannabis with up to 1% to be sold of any variety – not just EU-certified strains. The Swiss, therefore, are the leaders in this emerging CBD cannabis industry, with genetics that offer up to 25% CBD.
A number of other CBD shops have popped up in Austria’s biggest cities over the last year, with CBD-rich flowers selling very well to a population that has a long-running history with the cannabis plant. The CBD flowers in Austria can reach around 15% in CBD levels. This is due to the requirement of products to be from EU-certified hemp varieties, which are not typically very cannabinoid-rich.
Growers in the country are producing dense and aromatic flowers, however, almost indistinguishable from THC-rich cannabis, through expert cultivation methods usually used in the growing of illegal cannabis. With both indoor and outdoor strains available, the methods and techniques used for cultivation – as well as selectively-bred genetics – means the hemp coming out of Europe over the coming months and years is sure to improve somewhat.
Perhaps in the not-too-distant future, CBD-rich cannabis flowers and hash with low or nonexistent levels of THC will be prevalent throughout the EU. Maybe then the stigma surrounding cannabis and those who use it will crumble and people will see that there is much more to cannabis than getting ‘high’.
We at High & Polite believe that legal hemp buds are a great way for people to get their cannabinoids, which is why we have worked hard to bring the highest quality hemp flowers to UK market.