The White House

Office of the National Drug Control Policy

ONDCP Releases Survey of Cocaine Production in Colombia and Peru

(Washington, D.C.) — Today, the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) released the results of the annual U.S. Government estimates measuring cocaine production for Colombia and Peru. According to the annual estimate, there was a 12 percent increase in potential pure cocaine production in Colombia between 2012 and 2013, from 170 metric tons to 190 metric tons. Potential pure Peruvian cocaine production also increased between 2012 and 2013, from an estimated 290 metric tons to 305 metric tons, a five percent increase.

Despite these slight increases over the past year, there has been a net reduction in cocaine production in Colombia and Peru over time, from 775 pure metric tons in 2006 to 495 pure metric tons in 2013. Additionally, other indicators of the cocaine market in the United States, including retail drug purity, workplace drug test positives, and seizures, show a continued suppression of cocaine in the U.S. since 2006. Some key facts:

  • According to data from the 2012 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (the largest U.S. survey on drug use), the number of Americans aged 12 or older who are current users of cocaine has dropped by 32 percent since 2006.
  • The retail purity of powder cocaine purchased in the United States has dropped by 37 percent from the last quarter of 2006 to the same period in 2012.[1]
  • There has been a 65 percent drop in the rate of people in the U.S. testing positive for cocaine in the workplace between 2006 and 2012 (latest data available), from 72 to 21 out of every 10,000 workers tested.[2]
  • Overdose deaths in the U.S. related to cocaine dropped 37 percent, from 7,448 in 2006 to 4,681 in 2011, the year for which the most recent data are available.[3]
  • There has been a 63 percent drop in the number of cocaine seizures submitted to local, state, and Federal forensic labs in the United States from the first half of 2007 to the same period in 2013 (latest data available).[4]

Last year, the Obama Administration released a science-based drug policy that addresses the national drug challenge as a public health issue, not just a criminal justice issue. The 2013 National Drug Control Strategy is built upon the latest scientific research demonstrating that addiction is a chronic disease of the brain that can be successfully prevented and treated, and from which one can recover. The Strategy directs Federal agencies to expand community-based efforts to prevent drug use before it begins, empower healthcare workers to intervene early at the first signs of a substance use disorder, expand access to treatment for those who need it, and support the millions of Americans in recovery.

The rate of overall drug use in the United States has declined by roughly one-third since the late 1970s. To build on this progress and support public health approaches to drug control, the Obama Administration has requested more than $10.9 billion in FY 2015 for drug education programs and support for expanding access to drug treatment for people suffering from substance use disorders.

For more information about the Office of National Drug Control Policy, visit: www.Whitehouse.gov/ONDCP

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[1] Unpublished analysis by the Drug Enforcement Administration

[2] Quest Diagnostics Drug Testing Index, November 18, 2013

[3] CDC/NCHS

[4] 2011 Annual Report, National Forensic Laboratory Information System (NFLIS), DEA, March 2014 https://www.nflis.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/DesktopModules/ReportDownloads/Reports/NFLIS2013MY.pdf