The Stoned Society’s Mauro Picavet new ENCOD President

Learn what this means and why you should become a member.


Opening picture: Former ENCOD Coordinator Joep Oomen (left), Mauro Picavet (right). Picture by Derrick Bergman.

I’m happy to inform you I’ve become the new acting ‘President’ of ENCOD, following our Executive Committee meeting in Amsterdam a couple weeks ago. This was slightly expected, as the President changes every 6 months. We thank outgoing president Maja Kohek for her work and wish her all the best of luck in her studies. She will remain a member of the Executive Committee.

Read also: Drug Policy Coalition ENCOD Relaunches With New Board

Considering my work as secretary at VOC Nederland and thus close cooperation with VOC chairman and ENCOD member Derrick Bergman, for me it seems to make sense to step forward and help in restructuring ENCOD. He knows the organisation from the inside and outside longer than I have and as such, important decisions will always be discussed.

ENCOD Executive Committee. Picture: Bill Griffin

I also count on input from the newly elected Vice President Matthijs Pontier and his experience with the Dutch Pirate Party. Working with people on a distance, is something I’ve experienced earlier with worldwide correspondents at The Stoned Society.

New ENCOD website

In addition, one of the biggest and most important challenges will be to revamp the ENCOD website to something more suitable for the 21st century. We’ve also acquired for specific information on the (importance of) Freedom to Farm. The idea is to make it multi language.

Freedom to Farm at CND in Vienna, 2014. Picture: Derrick Bergman

Another thing I hope to get going is a monthly newsletter for our members, which would have updates from European drug policy changes or news from the past month. If there is news from your country (preferably in English), we’re happy to receive it and share it if it fits with our previous publications on our social media channels as we’ve been doing since the new board. We cannot promise we share everything that reaches us. This does not mean we are not in favor of it, however. There’s already a lot of news coming out of all the European member states, so we’re going to try and summarize it. My proposal will be discussed in the upcoming Executive Committee meeting.

Raising funds

Something less fun, but inevitable, is fundraising. That’s why we are working to realize a networking event for our members and potential members in Amsterdam. Considering the concentration of people and business in the Netherlands profiting from the grow business, it makes sense if we can activate or reactivate these companies to support us. Because if we do not get the Freedom to Farm, these companies will not be happy with the current progression of (medical) cannabis regulation in Europe in which home growing is not included.

Picture: Derrick Bergman

That the individual home growers are less likely to have money to spend, I hope these companies understand. But of course, we also hope our coalition continues to strengthen with individual members.

About the network meeting in Amsterdam you will learn more soon. And if you’re going to be at Cannafest, come say hi at the ENCOD booth, 164. I will not be in attendance however, as that’s the weekend we’ll be working on the new website.

ENCOD booth at Cannafest 2016. Picture: Derrick Bergman

Last but not least, I highly recommend reading Joep’s last ENCOD bulletin (which we are restructuring also): Grow Your Freedom.

More information about membership and supporting ENCOD can be found here.