Business News

Elderly Farmer Grows Cannabis by Mistake

Andy Eckardt

A 74-year old farmer in a small town in southern Germany who had intended to grow sunflowers says he planted more than 1,000 cannabis shrubs by mistake.

Alarmed by worried locals, German police visited the man on Tuesday and had him destroy the unusual crop on his one-acre field, which the man normally uses to grow potatoes.

Drug enforcement officials found a field of 10-feet high in the small town of Moembris, in the southern state of Bavaria.

Police officials told NBC News that the man told the astonished officers he had scattered half a sack of old bird seed and was surprised to see the tall, strange looking plants grow quickly, but did not realize that he had cultivated cannabis.

"The friendly elderly gentleman was surprised at the that had grown next to the flowers but did not identify them as cannabis plants," a police statement said.

"The farmer promptly ploughed up the field with the tractor under the watchful eyes of the police," police spokesman Stefan Brabetz told NBC News.

In a press release, officials indicated that the type of cannabis was too weak to have intoxicating effect and could not have led to addiction.

"Nevertheless, the case is being presented to the local prosecutor’s office and a judge will have to decide whether formal charges need to be filed or not," Stefan Brabetz said.

Under German law, it is a crime to "knowingly" grow cannabis.