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80% reduction in opium production in Afghanistan

Unprecedented 85% reduction of opium

poppy cultivation in Afghanistan

Our high-resolution satellite imagery analysis of 2023 poppy cultivation in Afghanistan reveals a massive 85% reduction across the country.

 

We have already reported that in Helmand Province poppy cultivation plummeted by a staggering 99%—from 129,000 hectares in 2022 to just 740 hectares in 2023 (see below).

 

We can now add to these extraordinary results:

 

Farah Province: 95% reduction going from 11,589 hectares to 532 hectares

Nimroz Province: 91% reduction going from 2,364 hectares to 209 hectares

 

In contrast Badakhshan experienced an increase from 13,803 hectares to 15,391 hectares, illustrating the challenges faced by the Taliban to eradicate and ban poppy growing in remote mountainous regions.

These new figures reveal an unprecedented reduction in the growing of opium poppy, in the country that supplies the vast majority of the world’s illegal heroin.

Behind the numbers are people. We must not ignore the impact the poppy ban has on Afghan farmers and their livelihoods. Enduring reductions in cultivation could lead to a growing economic crisis, political instability, and an outflow of migrants from rural Afghanistan to Europe.

Lead researcher David Mansfield said “The scale of the reduction is unprecedented”

 

Former UK Drug Tzar and UN official, Mike Trace said, “A sustained reduction in poppy cultivation on this scale will have significant long-term impacts on the patterns of heroin trafficking and organised crime around the world, and also on patterns of consumption and addiction in the UK.”

In his latest blog post "Whistling in the Wind: The Inevitable Return of Poppy Cultivation to Afghanistan" David explores his findings further, giving fascinating insight into the impact this has on farmers and possible future outcomes. 

 

 

You are free to download and use the maps below. Please include this copyright attribution when you use them.

Copyright @ Alcis 2023 | Basemap copyright @ Esri

There is more detail and insight in this blog post

For more information contact alison.hall@alcis.org  +44 (0) 7920 883976

In Farah Province there was a 95% reduction in poppy growing in 2023 (compared to 2022)

Helmand Province

In Helmand Province there was a 99% reduction in poppy growing in 2023 (compared to 2022)

You are free to download and use the maps below. Please include this copyright attribution when you use them.

Copyright @ Alcis 2023 | Basemap copyright @ Esri

For more information contact:

Alison Hall

alison.hall@alcis.org

+44 (0) 7920 883976

Download Press Release

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