New poll: Support for legalization in Germany drastically increased in one year

German Hemp Association, Press release, November 16th 2015

One year after our last poll we had a new poll conducted by Infratest Dimap.

The same question as last year was asked again and support for legalization of cannabis has increased since from 30 to 42 percent! This is the highest ever detected value in a representative poll.
In addition, 51 percent of respondents indicated that they believe cannabis in Germany will be legally available for adults in a few years.

A year ago, the German Hemp Association started Europes biggest PR campaign with cinema spots for a sensible cannabis policy. The spots were watched approximately 2.7 million times in cinemas and on Youtube and there was plenty of media coverage. The new poll should also measure the success of this campaign.

Statement given by DHV spokesman Georg Wurth:

12 percent more approval to legalize than a year ago – this shows the tremendous momentum the subject has at the moment. Many different experts have taken a stance for legalization in the recent months. From criminal law professors to the German Centre for Addiction Issues, they all agree that we need to break new ground when it comes to cannabis. The eloquent judge Andreas Müller has brought many to rethink the issue. Given the developments in the US and Uruguay, apparently a majority of Germans now believe that legalization is only a matter of time.
We believe that we have contributed to this developement with the spots and other actions. We will continue to strive to convince the population that a black market is the wrong approach. If this trend continues, we will soon have a majority in favor of legal cannabis shops.

It is time to consider the implications of a regulated cannabis market in small and temporally limited projects. If a majority of Germans expects the legalization of cannabis in the foreseeable future, pilot projects, such as have been requested by different german cities and districts, should be approved by the federal government.

Infratest Dimap summarizes the results as follows:

Germans open to legal and regulated cannabis purchase

  • The enabling of the legal and regulated acquisition of cannabis has still no majority in Germany. However, support for cannabis legalization as grown in the past year following international trends: Four out of ten german citizens (42 percent) would currently welcome the establishment of cannabis shops, where adults could obtain cannabis legally and regulated. In October 2014 around one third of Germans (30 percent) supported legalization. Six out of ten (57 percent) still reject legal purchase, last year it was 68 percent accordingly.
  • Political majorities for the legal purchase of cannabis by adults in the ranks of the parliamentary parties can only be found between the followers of the Green Party (67 percent) and the Left Party (56 percent).  Between the supporters of the Social Democratic Party (44:55 percent), and especially  the voters of the Christian Democratic Union (29:70 per cent) the rejection ist still considerably.

Half of Germans expects cannabis legalization in Germany in a few years

  • The expectations of german voters on the future development of the legal situation of cannabis diverge visibly: One half (51 percent) believes cannabis will be legally available for adults in Germany in a few years, while the other half (47 percent) can´t imagine legalization comming anytime soon.
  • Mainly followers of the Green Party (64 percent) and the Left Party (65 percent) expect the long-term legalization of cannabis in Germany.  In contrast, the supporters of the Christian Democratic Union mostly don´t think cannabis will be legally available in a few years (44:54 per cent). The Social Democratic Party voters are split in their expectations (51:47 per cent).

In the annexes, we provide all the information available in the poll. The numbers show, that there are no major differences of opinion in the age groups 18 to 59. Only in the generation 60+ support for legalization decreases significantly. In addition, approval rates rise with higher education and income.


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