Someone phoned me the other day and said he was looking for an accountant to help him with his new business selling cannabis seeds. He was going to import them from Holland and sell them as "souvenirs" or for genetic testing. Believe it or not, it is apparently perfectly legal in this country to sell cannabis seeds (or hemp as he called them) so long as you don't grow them into plants or give any advice on germination. In fact, there is already a firm called Attitude Seeds doing this. He reckoned it was just the same as garden centres selling hydroponic equipment for growing tomatoes indoors. Everyone knows what they are really for, he said.
I phoned the ACCA for advice. They said it was OK to act for him provided it didn't bring the accountancy profession into disrepute. Thanks a lot guys - that was a big help! I ended up turning him down. I said that unless his main clients were buying them for industrial use, or he did something to render the seeds unusable as drugs (maybe roasting them like peanuts) I couldn't take the chance.
Was I being a bit unfair or would other members have done the same?