When he’s not blaming foreigners for pandemics, Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul and the Bhumjaithai Party in general are big fans of weed. They, and many others, are behind the recent moves to decriminalize (and monetize) ganja. 

Over the weekend our notorious minister—and some assume our next exalted leader— found himself in Kanchanaburi making weed-infused pad krapao to show attendants how it’s done. Other dishes were made at the conference, including cannabis sweet potato filling, cannabis boat noodles, and tea. It was said there are 98 medical recipes to treat everything from insomnia to gas.

Stressing that weed has been used in Thailand for more than 200 years, the politician was quick to point out that the new lax laws would be for medical purposes only. Which is...unlikely

“We are moving forward to enable Thai people to grow cannabis for medicinal purposes just like any other medicinal plant, But there must be an appropriate control,” he said, adding that upcoming legislation would make matters clearer. 

Why Kanchanaburi? This academic conference was meant to promote weed as a cash crop—crop being the operative word. The meet was held for the 5th Public Health Region, which has around 3,000 rai of cannabis plantation area and three cannabis processing plants.