43,500 Opium Poppies Found in California Town
Monterey County sheriff’s deputies discovered a field filled with thousands of opium poppies, which was enough to make $45,000 worth of heroin. According to officials, the field contained 27,000 plants and an additional 16,500 poppies that had already been harvested. Authorities eradicated the poppies, which combined together could make about 13 pounds of raw opium. That amount of opium could then be converted to 1.5 pounds of heroin, which would have added to the ongoing opioid crisis. The department stated,
This operation shows the Sheriff’s Office commitment to battling the opioid epidemic that our communities and nation currently face.
According to the New York Times, California has one of the lowest overall opioid-related death rates in the country. However, the northern part of the state, which is more rural, has seen an increase in opioid deaths in recent years. The Associated Press reports that the huge poppy field could have produced at least 4 pounds of heroin per year. Surprisingly, the field could have been harvested three times a year. The investigation into who is involved in growing the plants is still ongoing. Hopefully, more operations such as this one are conducted to reduce the amount of opioids that are available for people to purchase.