Methamphetamine prices and purities

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This resource is part of EU Drug Market: Methamphetamine — In-depth analysis by the EMCDDA and Europol.

Last update: 6 May 2022

Retail prices and purities highlight product diversity

Given the relatively low prevalence of methamphetamine on European drug markets, not all countries report retail prices, and for the countries with data, there is a considerable range: from EUR 13.50 per gram in Hungary to EUR 113 per gram in Cyprus (in 2020). Some of that price disparity is related to the type of methamphetamine on offer, with the powder product generally being cheaper and of lower purity and the crystal methamphetamine usually being more expensive and of higher purity.

Analysis of darknet market data on methamphetamine sourced in Europe in 2020 reveals that when purchased by the gram, the typical price is EUR 55 (n = 143, range EUR 10 to EUR 100). However, when between 5 and 100 grams are purchased in a single transaction, the typical price per gram falls to EUR 20, regardless of whether the purchase quantity is 5 grams (n = 108), 10 grams (n = 105), 50 grams (n = 88) or 100 grams (n = 95).

Wholesale prices indicate the efficiencies of large-scale production

Data on wholesale (per kilogram) prices from non-darknet sources are also limited. In Czechia, 1 kilogram of locally produced methamphetamine costs between EUR 18 900 and EUR 21 200, while methamphetamine imported from the Netherlands commands a price of between EUR 15 100 and EUR 17 000 when sold on the Czech drug market (Police of the Czech Republic, 2021), indicating that the local product, typically made from extracted medicines, is more desirable. Dutch law enforcement reports that the wholesale price of methamphetamine dropped by almost 40 %, from an average of EUR 12 750 in 2019 to EUR 7 675 per kilogram in 2020 (Politie, 2021a, 2021b).

The price of methamphetamine on some international markets such as Australia, Japan and New Zealand is considerably higher than in Europe, making these destinations an attractive proposition for European producers. For example, in Australia in 2020, the average price of 1 kilogram of methamphetamine was between EUR 175 000 and EUR 217 000 (AUD 290 000 and 360 000). In New Zealand, the typical wholesale price was EUR 102 000 (NZD 180 000), with an upper price of EUR 171 000 (NZD 300 000). Although the wholesale price was not available for Japan in 2020, the retail price of 1 gram of methamphetamine was approximately EUR 492 (JPY 60 000).

On darknet markets in 2020, 32 listings were identified, purporting to ship from Europe, that offered 1 kilogram or more, and the typical price per kilogram was EUR 14 000 (range EUR 7 250 to EUR 24 250).

Interpreting methamphetamine purity data is challenging because it is not always reported whether the samples are of powder or crystal methamphetamine. In some cases, clear differences can be noted between the markets in different countries. In countries where powder methamphetamine is the main product on the market, the average purities are generally quite low and the converse is true in countries where crystal methamphetamine predominates. For example, in Estonia and Latvia, the average reported methamphetamine purity is generally low, between 16 % and 26 % in 2020, reflecting that methamphetamine powder is the main product in those countries. Czechia, France and the Netherlands reported purities between 65 % and 85 % in 2020, indicating a market dominated by crystal methamphetamine.

References

Consult the list of references used in this resource.

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