While the West carrys on its steady course towards legalisation, piggy backing on the ever-increasing awareness of marijuana's medicinal properties, Japan's cannabis laws remain steadfastly harsh. However, a recently discovered loophole allows for the non psychoactive compound, CBD, to be imported and consumed within Japan. CBD which has numerous health benefits is extracted from the stalk of the plant, whereas Japanese law only forbids use of the plant's leaves and flowers.
Shirasaka, head member of Taima Houdou Center, a legalisation group and advocate for medicinal cannabis, and the man who discovered the CBD loophole is currently awaiting trial for marijuana possession but plans to fight his case on the basis of cannabis's remarkable therapeutic properties. We went to visit Shirasaka as he prepares for his trial. We also visit terminally ill cancer patient, POP, a woman to claims CBD has helped her live years beyond her prognosis, and witness a family with a severely epileptic child try CBD for the first time with incredible results.