HomeNewsBriefGlobal Marijuana Map Shows Trends in LatAm Trade
BRIEF

Global Marijuana Map Shows Trends in LatAm Trade

DRUG POLICY / 24 OCT 2013 BY MARGUERITE CAWLEY EN

A map showing world marijuana use and prices indicates that, in Latin America at least, both of these factors are more affected by the availability of the drug than the legal regime governing its use.

The interactive map, published by the Guardian (see static rendition below), shows that Chile and Panama have mainland Latin America's highest retail marijuana prices, with the drug costing $10 or more per gram. The retail price of marijuana is also higher in Paraguay -- South America's biggest marijuana producer -- than in Brazil.

Meanwhile, Peru, Colombia, Brazil, Nicaragua, Guatemala and Mexico have the region's lowest prices, at under $1 per gram.

Paraguay is the country with the lowest wholesale price, at $20 per kilo, followed by Colombia, where the wholesale price is $40.3 per kilo. Panama, despite having one of the highest retail prices, has the third lowest wholesale price, at $50 per kilo.

With the exceptions of Guatemala and Brazil, the countries with the cheapest retail marijuana also have the lowest percentage of users, at under 3 percent of residents aged 15 to 64. Use is heaviest in Brazil and Uruguay, with over eight percent of residents using marijuana.

marijuanamap

InSight Crime Analysis

The map indicates there is little correlation between marijuana prices and rates of use. Both these factors are likely fed instead by the availability of marijuana.

Mexico and Colombia are major marijuana producers. While Mexico is one of the world's biggest marijuana suppliers though, a significant amount stays in the country. In Colombia, around 70 percent of marijuana produced is destined for the internal consumer market.

Most of the marijuana produced in Paraguay, meanwhile, is pumped into the large consumer markets of neighboring Brazil and Uruguay, which could explain the higher retail price in Paraguay compared to Brazil (perhaps the equivalent of paying higher prices for good coffee in Guatemala, since most of the coffee is exported).

SEE ALSO: Uruguay: Marijuana, Organized Crime and the Politics of Drugs

Part of the explanation for Chile's high prices could be related to increased police seizures. In 2010, the Santiago Times reported a tripling of marijuana prices, following a 107 percent rise in seizures in preceding years.

Legality also appears to have little connection to price or use rates. According to the map, private consumption and cultivation is legal in Chile, yet Chile has some of the region's highest prices. Brazil and Uruguay have similarly high use rates, but personal use and possession is legal and not capped in Uruguay, while possession of large amounts is punishable in Brazil with up to 15 years in prison.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

BRAZIL / 24 JUN 2016

Much of the South American cocaine destined for global markets flows through Brazil according a UN report, and there are…

HONDURAS / 19 JUL 2012

A US agent's killing of a suspected drug trafficker in Honduras highlights Washington's deepening involvement in the country's fight against…

BRAZIL / 12 AUG 2013

A new study into violence in Brazil over the last 30 years suggests an array of social and economic…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Apure Investigation Makes Headlines

22 OCT 2021

InSight Crime’s investigation into the battle for the Venezuelan border state of Apure resonated in both Colombian and Venezuelan media. A dozen outlets picked up the report, including Venezuela’s…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Tackles Illegal Fishing

15 OCT 2021

In October, InSight Crime and American University’s Center for Latin American and Latino Studies (CLALS) began a year-long project on illegal, unreported, unregulated (IUU) fishing in…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Featured in Handbook for Reporting on Organized Crime

8 OCT 2021

In late September, the Global Investigative Journalism Network (GIJN) published an excerpt of its forthcoming guide on reporting organized crime in Indonesia.

THE ORGANIZATION

Probing Organized Crime in Haiti

1 OCT 2021

InSight Crime has made it a priority to investigate organized crime in Haiti, where an impotent state is reeling after the July assassination of President Jovenel Moïse, coupled with an…

THE ORGANIZATION

Emergency First Aid in Hostile Environments

24 SEP 2021

At InSight Crime's annual treat, we ramped up hostile environment and emergency first aid training for our 40-member staff, many of whom conduct on-the-ground investigations in dangerous corners of the region.