Legal drug trade
Legal drug trade, as with other goods object of commerce, in opposition to smuggling or illegal drug trade, most psychotropic substances' commerce is under control and taxation by world governments, regardless of the relative perceived danger of the goods that are object of legislation. Legal commerce in drugs can be categorized according to the purpose of consumption (therapeutic vs recreational), type of drug involved and phase of the trading process, i.e.: Production, Distribution or Consumption.
Legal Trade of Drugs for Therapeutic Use
Drugs useful for treating diseases are the object of pharmaceutical research and medical practice, and produced by pharmaceutical companies, which in theory should be above United Nations legislation prohibiting use or sole possession of the drugs termed illegal for other purposes.
Pharmaceutical companies, through authorized dealers, guarantee the distribution of their products to its customers. Since antiquity, there have been stores specialized in drug selling. Today, they are called pharmacies or, straightforwardly, drugstores. Certain drugs officially considered trade-able without medical supervision are also sold in non-specialized stores, such as supermarkets.
Legal Trade of Drugs for Recreational Use
Alcoholic beverages, containing psychoactive ethyl alcohol, are produced legally throughout the world. Their production supports a commercial alcohol industry. Consumption of alcohol is subject to regulation in most countries, namely by means of age restrictions.
Tobacco, a recreational drug containing nicotine, is produced legally in countries such as Cuba, China, and the United States. This also supports a tobacco industry and the production of a variety of Tobacco products, which, like alcoholic beverages, are subject to age restrictions in most countries.
Caffeine, a stimulant drug, is extracted from plants including the coffee plant and the tea bush. It is the most widely consumed psychoactive substance in the world, remaining unregulated and generally recognized as safe by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
There are authorized dealers which provide consumers with legal intoxicants, every industry developing a network of distribution to connect with its clients. Drug publicity by producers and distributors aims at increasing consumption.
The above-mentioned substances represent the most important products legally produced for the purposes of mind-altering effects. Some critics[who?] argue that cannabis and/or opioids occupy the social position of alcohol and/or tobacco in some non-western countries, where alcohol and its users could be treated in a way resembling the harassment and prosecution of illegal drug users in western countries ; in cultural defiance of UN´s Worldwide Prohibition. They are also the most important[who?] public health concern, as a result of prohibition of certain other drugs.
- Legal intoxicants
- Illegal drug trade
- Drug prohibition law
- Drug liberalization
References and Sources
- Noam Chomsky, "On the War on Drugs", Week Online, DRCNet, February 8, 2002