Opium poppies to be legalised in Victoria as demand for painkillers soars
21st March 2014
Bill to decriminalise the narcotic crop passes parliament, potentially bringing $100m in annual revenue to the state
Opium poppies will soon be grown commercially in Victoria after a bill decriminalising the narcotic crop passed Victoria’s parliament last week. Approved farmers will begin growing poppies under strict regulations as early as this year, creating an industry that Victoria’s agriculture minister, Peter Walsh, said could contribute $100m a year to the state’s economy. “This would be a totally new addition to Victoria’s cropping sector and it is a very exciting opportunity for our farmers,” he said.