According to the Swiss authorities, hemp flowers and tobacco should be taxed the same, since they both smoked in a similar way… As a result, smokable hemp flowers will carry a 25% tax.
Last week a court in Switzerland made things more complicated for the local hemp industry by ruling that sale of hemp flowers should carry a 25% tax, as tobacco sales do. The justification for the new tax was that since hemp flowers are smoked in a similar way to cigarettes, or other tobacco products, they should be taxed the same way.
The new ruling, by the Swiss Federal Administrative Court, is a huge disappointment to the local industry, that has tried to convince the court to keep the tax at 12%, the same as other tobacco products. However, the court ruled that smokables are smokables so both tobacco cigarettes and hemp flowers will be treated the same, even when one is known to be full of health risks, while the other also carries health benefits.
As a result, hemp flowers in Switzerland will be taxed at $38 per kilogram while retail sales of hemp buds will suffer a 25% tax. But there is more, suppliers will have to pay the new 25% tax (+ 8% VAT) monthly on the forecast of the coming month, which is a big problem for small business, unable to comply with the new tax.
While the decision is final, the industry is putting its hope in the Swiss Supreme Court where an appeal is expected to arrive soon.
The Price of hemp flowers is expected to rise all over Europe
While this is bad news for Swiss businesses, the implications of the new tax could hit shops all over the EU, as Switzerland is still the main supplier of high-CBD hemp flowers to all of Europe. Even in the UK, where there is a big debate about whether or not hemp flowers are legal (Both the CTA and CannaPro, UK’s main cannabis and hemp trade associations, believes it not to be legal, at least until it is processed, but then again, no charges have been made, yet…), most of the flowers still come from Switzerland.
Discussing European hemp flowers, we should always keep in mind, that most countries currently allow a maximum of 0.2% THC, which means that many of the ‘20% CBD’ flowers, sold online are not ‘real’ hemp flowers, but altered ones… Do you need help sourcing the best hemp flowers? Contact us for wholesale prices.
Not only in Europe the new tax is making headlines, but also elsewhere, where regulators are looking into the new trend of smoking hemp flowers, asking themselves how high can they tax it for…
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