Cocaine Problems in the Coca-Growing Countries of South America

  1. Gregory R. Bock Organizer and
  2. Julie Whelan
  1. J. C. Negrete

Published Online: 28 SEP 2007

DOI: 10.1002/9780470514245.ch4

Ciba Foundation Symposium 166 - Cocaine: Scientific and Social Dimensions

Ciba Foundation Symposium 166 - Cocaine: Scientific and Social Dimensions

How to Cite

Negrete, J. C. (2007) Cocaine Problems in the Coca-Growing Countries of South America, in Ciba Foundation Symposium 166 - Cocaine: Scientific and Social Dimensions (eds G. R. Bock and J. Whelan), John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., Chichester, UK. doi: 10.1002/9780470514245.ch4

Author Information

  1. Department of Psychiatry, McGill University, Montreal General Hospital & Drug Dependence Unit, 1650 Cedar Avenue, Montreal, Quebec, Canada H3G lA4

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 28 SEP 2007

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780471931799

Online ISBN: 9780470514245

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Keywords:

  • cocaine;
  • agricultural problems;
  • ecological damage;
  • hazardous properties;
  • south america

Summary

The problems of cocaine present a rather particular profile in the Central Andes region from which this drug originates. On the one hand there is a relatively harmless pattern of use (coca leaf chewing) in the countries concerned which minimizes the drug's most hazardous properties. On the other hand the region suffers from some of the most severe cocaine-related problems to be observed anywhere: (a) easy access to the newer, highly toxic preparations of the drug (such as coca paste) and a rapid growth in the number of new users; (b) the abandonment of certain traditional and essential agricultural activities in favour of the more profitable coca leaf' production; (c) the severe ecological damage being caused in the coca growing areas; and (d) the establishment of a powerful coca trade economy which is subverting the very fabric of society and is creating corruption, lawless violence and political anarchy.