1. Terrapinzflyer
    Afghanistan now also world's top hashish producer: UN

    Afghanistan, the world?s biggest producer of opium, has also become a major source for cannabis, overtaking Morocco as the top producer of hashish, the UN's Office on Drugs and Crime said Wednesday.

    "While other countries have even larger cannabis cultivation, the astonishing yield of the Afghan cannabis crop makes Afghanistan the world?s biggest producer of hashish," UNODC Executive Director Antonio Maria Costa said in a statement.

    An UNODC survey estimated Afghanistan farmers produce 145 kilograms per hectare of hashish, the resin produced from cannabis, as compared to around 40 kg/ha in Morocco, for an overall amount of 1,500 to 3,500 tonnes a year.

    It estimated that 10,000 to 24,000 hectares of cannabis are grown in Afghanistan every year worth 39 to 94 million dollars, which is still only 10 to 20 percent of the value of opium production to farmers.

    Afghanistan's illicit drugs industry is worth up to three billion dollars a year, controlled by militants and gangs who use cross-border routes to smuggle drugs to Pakistan and Iran, and bring arms and fighters back in.

    Cannabis brought farmers a higher estimated net income due to lower cultivation costs, some 3,341 dollars per hectare compared to 2,005 dollars for opium, but its need for irrigation and shorter shelf life limits its overall attractiveness, the UNDOC survey found.

    It found that like opium, cannabis was mostly being grown in areas of instability in the south of the country, being exported, and was a source of financing for insurgents fighting the Afghan government and foreign troops.

    "All drugs in Afghanistan, whether opium or cannabis, are taxed by those who control the territory, providing an additional source of revenue for insurgents," said Costa.

    The solution to the opium and cannabis problems is the same, he said.

    "By improving security and development in Afghanistan?s drug-producing regions, we can knock out the world?s biggest supplies of both hash and heroin," said Costa.

    Last year 6,900 tonnes of opium were produced in Afghanistan, or more than 90 percent of the world total, according to UNODC estimates.

    The Afghanistan government launched at the beginning of March a campaign to eradicate poppy fields with aid to farmers to cultivate alternative crops.

    Published: 31/03/2010 at 11:49 AM



  1. Alfa
    The Irony is that Costa and it's UN are directly responsible for Afghanistan its success in the drug trade. Especially cannabis cultivation and hashish production, as previously most was produced in the western countries. But due to the hardline approach to counter cannabis cultivation in the west, the cultivation has been driven into the hands of the Afghans and the revenue has been taken out of the hands of small growers and placed in the hands of warlords. So instead of supporting families, the cannabis revenue is now supporting the Afghan war and possibly international terrorist attacks. Good move Costa! Smart thinking.
  2. Nature Boy
    It's incredible that Afghanistan is now the world's #1 hashish producer. A few years back Morocco would have lead the global league table by miles. A shame in SWIM's opinion because he found the standard of Moroccan hash to be way better than any Afghan he's tried. SWIM hasn't seen good hash outside of Holland in ages.
  3. Terrapinzflyer
    the turtles aardvark remembers in the early 80's getting incredible Afghani hash, bearing a gold stamp saying something to the effect of "proceeds from this hash support the afghani freedom fighters" , who, while the US supported them in their war against the Soviet Union, by and large became what is now the Taliban. Funny the way things go...
  4. chillinwill
    Afghan farmers reap cannabis harvest worth £61m

    Afghanistan, already the world's top opium supplier, is now the world's biggest producer of cannabis, according to United Nations drug experts.

    There is large-scale cultivation of the drug in half of the country, resulting in 3,500 tons of hashish worth an estimated £61m annually, according to the first assessment of cannabis in Afghanistan by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime. It warns that the threat from the drug needs to be dealt with to deny the Taliban the millions they make in protection taxes paid by farmers and drug smugglers.

    The focus on opium has resulted in cannabis being overlooked, according to Antonio Maria Costa, executive director of UNODC. "A concentration of cultivation in the southern part of Afghanistan shows that the Taliban and those insurgents that control the southern parts of the country are not only funding themselves by trafficking opium but also by trafficking cannabis. It's the same area."

    Sporadic government crackdowns have merely resulted in a shift in production to the south of the country, with most cannabis now grown in regions where the insurgency is at its strongest. There are close links with the heroin trade, with more than 67 per cent of cannabis farmers also growing opium, according to the report, which is based on a survey of more than 1,600 villages across the country. UN experts estimate that 60,000 households are now growing cannabis.

    Although cheaper than opium, cannabis can potentially earn a farmer more because it yields twice the quantity of drug per hectare and is cheaper and less labour-intensive to cultivate. Farmers can earn £2,173 per hectare – more than the £1,304 they get from opium. But since cannabis has a short shelf life and is grown only in the summer, when there is less water available, they continue to cultivate opium as their main drug crop.

    A British-backed paramilitary unit is hunting down Afghan drug lords as part of a new strategy against the drug trade. Four helicopters have already been provided by Britain for airborne assault missions by the Afghan Special Narcotics Force, with another two being made available to an Air Interdiction Unit this year. Targets are being drawn up by an Interagency Operations Co-ordination Centre in Kabul, led by officers from Britain's Serious Organised Crime Agency and the US Drug Enforcement Administration. But efforts are hampered by high levels of corruption and drug use among police, with 68 per cent testing positive for cannabis.

    Slamming the Afghan government as "pretty rotten", Mr Costa added: "Corruption has been a major lubricant of the very prosperous drug industry... it's throughout the system."

    By Jonathan Owen
    April 11, 2010
  5. mickey_bee
    Swim remembers getting both afghan and morrocan hasish back when he was a smoker, a long time ago now. Both in the UK and at shops in the 'Dam.

    In the UK-(i.e. at street level), he found that the morrocan hashish tended to be much less cut, but not excessively strong- by no means weak but not 'F**k' strong, more of a heady cerebral high like sativas.

    Whereas, in the UK at least, afghan hash tended to be more often cut,- or rather, produced in a hurry -(or with less care, given the quantity being produced), so still containing clingfilm from each individual brick when being compressed into several bricks for transportation etc. However, Afghan hashish was real pure indica product back then. Morrocan hash, even some of the very good stuff, would get you stoned/high, but afghan hash was heavy, it got you stonedddddd...........burning red eyes like no other cannabis ever gave, and stuck to the sofa, happy with whatever was on tv/music, no paranoia shit to worry about, swiy wud be too monged for that!

    While being a harsher smoke, swim always went for the afghan as he liked the heavy body-buzz, and chilled mind, as opposed to the freak-out inducing skunk, or morrocan hashish which just wasn't as heavy....

    Swim even preferred afghan product he'd bought in the UK over the, undeniably much purer, morrocan hashish he saw, (was given a guided tour of the fields and processing area!), in the main growing region of morrocco a few years ago.
    It was very good hash, a swimmer wouldn't need a press to get it into hash form, you simply held the fine pollen/m powder in your(pl) hand for a few minutes, and low and behold the outside turned dark brown and you were left with a solid lump of normal but GOOD hash.

    When swim told the producers he'd met that he was from Liverpool/Manchester, (where he was living at the time), the guide immediately started reeling off names of clients who came from those cities, and cited them as some of his best clients in Europe. As swim was talking to him, he got a phone call from a man from, swim thinks it was Manchester, who'd just successfully returned home with ~50 litres of high-potency hash-oil. The guide finished the call and laughed, saying, 'he made it, but he has told me he won't be making that journey again, the scariest moments of his life! haha'.

    EDIT: One of swim's highest moments, and he's taken alot of drugs, was listening to 'waterfall' by Jimi Hendrix, stoned on Afghan hash, when he was 14 and just gettin into 'proper' music.........wow..........
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