With one pillar of the establishment set to embrace cannabis, will the Head of the British State now follow suit?
Earlier this week it emerged that the Church of England (CofE) is to consider medical cannabis investments. The titular head of the CofE is Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth The Second and this has prompted speculation the Royal Family will follow suit.
A blogger at the International Cannabis Business Conference mused: “Anglophiles must be wondering what comes next. Could even the Queen, if not the Royal Family in general, become one of the best ‘cannabis brands’ in the world? The answer is, obviously, not only could they but further leads to the next obvious question – when will they?”
If the Royal Family does eventually embrace medical cannabis then it would be merely following in the footsteps of the King who created the CofE: Henry the Eighth.
King Henry formed the Church after ditching Catholicism and the Pope so he could to separate from his first wife Catherine of Aragon and marry Anne Boleyn – who he later had beheaded.In 1533, King Henry the Eighth mandated that for every 60 acres, farmers had to set aside one rood – about one-quarter of an acre – for hemp to make rope, sails and nets for the Navy!
The International Cannabis Business Conference blogger continues: “Expect this newest foray into ‘tradition-breaking’ to come from a not-so-surprising source – the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
“For those unfamiliar with British Royal titles, that means Meghan and Harry – and not just because he had to go to a rehab clinic once for being caught with a joint by his dad – or because she handed out party gifts containing the same during marriage party number 1, and now has a cannabis strain named after her.”
U.K newspaper the Financial Times (FT) has reported that the investment arm of the CofE will relax a self-imposed ban and consider investment into medical cannabis.The Church Commissioners for England, which oversees the church’s £12.6 billion investment portfolios, has previously had an investment exclusion on cannabis.
Edward Mason, head of responsible investment at the Church Commissioners told the FT: “We make a distinction between recreational cannabis and medicinal cannabis. We are content with it being used for proper medicinal purposes.”
The UK is currently the largest manufacturer of legal cannabis; In 2016 it produced 95 tonnes – 44.9 per cent of the world’s total.