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Peruvian coca leaf crops grow given international drug demand

Lima, Jun 27 (Prensa Latina) Former Director of Peru's anti-drug prevention agency Ricardo Soberon on Tuesday warned that coca leaf crops are growing given the increased demand for drugs, especially for the United States and Europe.

The expert and former president of “Devida,” National Commission for Development and Life without Drugs, told Prensa Latina about its report which provided some details on the eradication of 25,000 hectares of coca leaf crops by 2022.

Such a plant is classed as healthy, but from which cocaine is extracted with chemical procedures.

The official report recognizes that, despite this decrease, the cultivation of the Peruvian coca leaf rose by 18% from 81,000 hectares in 2020 to 95,000 in 2022, which growing trend has been continuing since 2018.

According to Soberon, the eradication goals are being met, but it is clear that the demand for both cocaine in the United States and Europe, and cocaine base paste (the phase prior to the crystallization of the drug) in Brazil, favors the increase in plantations.


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