Would You Smoke Weed Imported from North Korea?
With Trump meeting Kim Jong-un in the DMZ this past week, maybe we can get to try North Korean weed.
Would you try weed from North Korea if you had the chance? North Korea has been a major producer of hemp and marijuana for decades and it is one of the crops they can sell to other Asian countries and avoid US sanctions. Since North Korea is a communist dictatorship with stringent rules for entering and leaving the country, it is very hard for a Westerner to get into North Korea, let alone buy an “illegal” drug like marijuana.
With President Trump meeting Kim Jong-un in the DMZ zone recently in an effort to reset their peace talks, one begs the question, if the US and North Korea became new BFF’s, would you try imported North Korean weed? What if North Korea agreed to drop all nuclear testing in the US imported tons of weed and coal. Coal is North Korea’s biggest export and how they continue to fund their regime government.
In a brief survey, answers to this question ranged all over the board.
“Yes, why not, I bet they have unaltered genomes and phenomes for 200 years”.
“No, their government is a massive human rights abuser with prison camps and firing squads, not giving them a dime either way.”
“I would be more interested in the seeds than the actual grown plants.”
China is also a major producer of hemp and cannabis plants, although general Internet rumors say to stay about from Chinese hemp and CBD due to hard metals and contaminants in the plants. China does not have a formal EPA and rumors of massive pollution run-off and pesticide use are rampant on the Internet. North Korea on the other hand, has been “cut off” from Western trade due to sanction for over 50 years on the country. They have worked around the sanctions using such methods of switching ship identification numbers at sea, moving product by railway at night to other Asian countries that will deal with them, and using mislabeled air cargo receipts to avoid detection.
So, what about their weed?
There are probably thousands of strains and mutations that the Western world have never had access to until this point. Landrace strains, the hardest to find and preserve, could run rampant in the country as the soil and topography is similar to that of Afghanistan and some countries in the Middle East. There could be a “Noah’s Ark” effect on the cannabis world as long lost and undiscovered strains could be cloned and studied in the West. What kind of medical possibilities are there for hundred of new genomes and strains?
The downside is that the government of North Korea is a massive human rights abuser and runs a strict dictatorship, with many North Koreans just trying to survive and get food and shelter. Buying pot from a dictator may just enhance and empower his regime in oppressing freedom of speech and democracy. The US faced similar questions in the 1970s and 80s around the import of oil from dictatorships in the Middle East. We needed the oil then but the US dollars we sent over went to fortifying ruthless dictators in poor countries.
The temptation to try the weed and see what it is like and how it compares are definite “wants” in our mind, but knowing the money was going to support a dictator that puts his people in-front of firing squads and in death camps, we would have to pass.
What about Cuban cigars that support a communist regime in Cuba? There is a ban on importing Cuban cigars, but every cigar fan knows how to get them if the need arises.
China is technically a communist state with a president for life, but due to the complicated structure of capitalism and public markets in China, it is a unique animal all to its own. We import billions of dollars of Chinese goods a year, even with the new Trump tariffs. Pretty much all the electronics and plastic gods in your life were made in China and imported here to the USA.
Why should cannabis be any different? China imports massive amounts of our agriculture like soy beans and apples from the US. Cannabis is plant, no different from tomatoes or broccoli, expect for the legal status of the plant dictated by the DEA and FDA. China even imports thousands of pigs from US hog farmers as the growing Chinese middles class is craving more expensive animal proteins as their budgets expand, so why not shop some Chinese weed back to the US?