The Beginning

Cannabis Social Club amsterdam

Tree of Life, Cannabis Social Club Amsterdam was established in 2014 as a civil society initiative of cannabis consumers and activists who were unhappy with the situation at the time. The hope was that a Cannabis Social Club could guarantee product safety and quality, within a legal production chain, offering patients a diversified product choice, based on their individual needs.

The Club held weekly meetings in a central location in Amsterdam, where members could share their home-grown cannabis with other fellow members in a safe environment, while discussing cannabis-related topics. It was also customary to invite press and media representatives while the board of the association was having meetings with local authorities and city councilors, in order to get the Club a proper recognition, including a grow-facility.

Scientific research

That led to  a scientific research project  in collaboration with the University of Amsterdam and the Amsterdam Medical Center, for which a special exemption of the Opium act would be needed.

Amsterdam City Council was the main supporter of this project. 

Eventually in 2017, the new government  agreed on a 4 year-trial (the Cannabis experiment)  on the precondition that only coffeeshops in only 10 municipalities would participate. Because of that, the project of the Tree of Life, CSCA lost momentum.

Nevertheless, that project remains a milestone in the Dutch history of cannabis regulation,  and  some of its principles  like the experimental-scientific approach are at the core of  the current cannabis experiment and for future regulation.