A grey-haired woman in her early 60s daintily lifts small trays topped with different varieties of marijuana to her nose, sniffing each of them carefully.
“Which one would you recommend for someone with medical issues?” she asks salesman Paul Monot, co-founder of the DrGreen shop in western Switzerland.
Posters of bright green cannabis plants advertise its wares, which, like those sold openly in a growing number of shops across Switzerland, are completely legal.
There is a catch however: They won’t make you high.
“There is no psychotropic effect of our weed,” says Monot, at his store in Lausanne.
On display are four varieties of legal cannabis boasting familiar names such as Skunk and Purple Haze, and an identical appearance and smell as their illegal counterparts.
Since 2011, cannabis containing up to one percent tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)—the component that gets recreational users high—can be sold and consumed legally in the wealthy Alpine country.
That compares to a 0.2-percent limit in most European countries,…