The strength of Irish cannabis has more than doubled in the last decade leading to increasing numbers of young people seeking treatment for addiction and psychosis.
The strength of cannabis resin coming from Morocco has been increasing at a particularly fast rate in recent years compared with cannabis herb, according to a European-wide study published in the scientific journal Addiction.
Resin offers significantly more “value for money” for users as it contains far more of the active ingredient THC per euro’s worth, the study states.
It also contains much less CBD – a substance that mitigates the effects of THC – compared with previous years.
Data collected from 28 EU member states based on drug seizures show the average potency of resin has increased from 8.14 per cent THC content in 2006 to 17.22 per cent in 2016.
The potency of herbal cannabis increased from 5 per cent to 10.22 per cent in the same time frame.
The potency of herbal cannabis, particularly home-grown strains, has been a matter of significant concern for health and addiction workers in recent years because of its connection with severe mental health problems, including psychosis.
Source: Conor Gallagher, The Irish Times, 12/01/19