Amazon Quiz: Which country is the world’s largest producer of opium, according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime?
Eight out of ten users worldwide received their opiates from Afghanistan, which produced 85% of the world’s opium in 2020, according to a study by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) titled “The drug situation in Afghanistan 2021 – current findings and emerging concerns”.
This volume of production has undercut efforts to prevent the war-torn country from serving as the centre of the world’s drug trade. The nation ruled by the Taliban produced 6,800 tonnes in 2021.
Ghada Waly, the Executive Director of UNODC said, “UNODC’s new research brief on the 2021 opium harvest, completed in July, and the overall drug situation in Afghanistan highlights the urgent need for international assistance to promote sustainable reductions in illicit drug cultivation, production and demand, as part of overall UN support to the people of Afghanistan”.
The analgesic alkaloid morphine, which makes up around 12% of opium, is chemically processed to create heroin and other synthetic opioids for both medical usage and the criminal drug trade.
Abū ‘Alī al-Husayn ibn Sina, a Persian physician, wrote about opium in his book, The Canon of Medicine. In the book, opium is described as the most potent of the stupefacients compared to mandrake and other potent herbs
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