Marijuana Now The Most Popular Drug in the World

Jun 29, 2012

Accord­ing to a U.N. report on global drug use, cannabis was the world’s most widely pro­duced, traf­ficked, and con­sumed drug in the world in 2010. Mar­i­juana boasts some­where between 119 mil­lion and 224 mil­lion users in the adult pop­u­la­tion of the world (18 or older). And there are no signs to indi­cate the pop­u­lar­ity of mar­i­juana will fall any­time soon. Cannabis is con­sumed in some fash­ion in all coun­tries, the report says, and it is grown in most. Though the use of the drug is sta­bi­liz­ing in North Amer­ica, and Ocea­nia, smok­ing pot is on the rise in West and Cen­tral Africa, South­ern Africa, South Asia and Cen­tral Asia. In 2010, mar­i­juana use was most preva­lent in Aus­tralia and New Zealand. The U.S. and Canada came in sec­ond, fol­lowed by Spain, France, Italy, and the Czech Repub­lic. Nige­ria, Zam­bia, and Mada­gas­car were tied for fourth place. The U.N. report also noted shifts in cul­tural trends. Some inter­est­ing stand­outs: The Euro­pean mar­ket is mov­ing away from cannabis resin (hashish) and towards the herb, which is more pop­u­lar in Amer­ica; cannabis became Afghanistan’s most lucra­tive cash crop in 2010, replac­ing heroin; and the mar­i­juana seed mar­ket grew immensely from 2008 to 2010, with 100 to 200 brands avail­able online when the report was writ­ten. The U.N. also reported that cannabis is becom­ing more potent in devel­oped coun­tries. The pop­u­lar­iza­tion of hydro­ponic cul­ti­va­tion, a method that uses min­eral nutri­ent solu­tions to grow plants in water with­out soil, means mar­i­juana is a) more likely to be grown indoors and b) stronger than tra­di­tion­ally grown plants. But beware of mar­i­juana imi­ta­tions. Or imi­ta­tions of any drug, really. New chem­i­cally engi­neered sub­stances are pop­ping up all across the world (see bath salts), and weed is no excep­tion to the trend. Syn­thetic cannabi­noids that emu­late the effects of weed but con­tain uncon­trolled prod­ucts have been detected since 2008 in herbal smok­ing blends. Source: Time Mag­a­zine (US) Author: Eliana Dock­ter­man Pub­lished: June 29, 2012 Copy­right: 2012 Time Inc. Con­tact: letters@​time.​com Web­site: http://​www​.time​.com/​t​i​me/

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Mar­i­juana Now The Most Pop­u­lar Drug in the World

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