Authorities in Uruguay have revealed how the drug will be produced and retailed legally.

Licensed pharmacies will sell the drug for less than $1 a gram (59p), with consumers allowed 40g a month.

The bill states that each household will be permitted to grow up to six cannabis plants, and that marijuana can be consumed in public places, like tobacco.

"Towards the end of November, early December, the sale of marijuana will already be available in the country through pharmacies," said government official Diego Canepa.

The bill is expected to come into force early next week.

Last year, Uruguay became the first country in the world to legalise the production, sale and consumption of the drug.

Uruguayan president Jose Mujica, who proposed the bill, argued that the global war on drugs is failing, and the legislation would allow authorities wrestle control of the business from drugs cartels and organised crime.

At the press conference, Canepa said that the government would launch the licensing process for companies interested in growing the drug within the next 15 days.

The government estimates that demand in Uruguay would require about 10 hectares of the plant to be cultivated.

The drug cannot be used in the workplace, and those caught driving whilst under its influence will face the same penalties as those caught drink driving.

In a recent report the UN criticised drugs legalisation policies, saying that they posed a health risk.