Opium poppy cultivation in Afghanistan reached a record-high last year, leading to unprecedented levels of potential heroin on the world market, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) said in a new report released on Monday.
Opium production in Afghanistan has increased by 43% according to a survey released on Monday by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).
4800 metric tons of opium has been produced in the past year, compared to 3300 metric tons during the previous year.
The highly-addictive drug heroin is obtained from the ‘opium poppy’, a flowering plant cultivated extensively in Afghanistan, where an illicit opium economy operates.
According to the UNODC, the sudden increase is largely driven by a higher opium yield per hectare.
Cultivation of opium poppies, the plant used to manufacture heroin, has dropped by 19 per cent year-on-year, according to a UN survey released on Wednesday.
Afghanistan has provided the majority of the world’s opium production since the early 1990s, and last year it rose to a record level, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) said.
But after six years on the rise, the agency figures released for 2015 show a sharp fall.