Written by: The Tall Cop
As we dive into 2024 there is something already clear, the over-the-counter drug market has plenty of “legal” items they are promoting. Let’s start the conversation with vapes. During recent scans in states in the Southwest and on the West Coast, I have noticed the number of hits in vapes being sold. Most commonly, the 7,000-10,000 range. This is not new to the market, but the prices of these products have reduced or held steady. As the amount of “hits” goes up so should the pricing, however, that is not the case. Meanwhile, the amount in the 10,000 - 15,000 range (yes, I said 15k hits) vapes available has increased. To put this in context, just before the pandemic a commonly purchased vape product or pod was around 200-300 hits. Now, you are lucky if you find anything that low. Most are well into the thousands which gives more insight into what schools are now dealing with.
The number of over-the-counter drugs that do not flag in a drug test or work like controlled substances such as opioids is continuing to grow. We are seeing states ban some of these drugs which is making some individuals move to other available legal substances. For instance, during a recent community scan in the state of Michigan. I found an over-the-counter depressant in every smoke shop and gas station that I went into. Not only did they have the product, but they also had it in large quantities.
Lastly, we can’t leave out our Deltas. Delta 8, 9, 10, 11, THCO etc. I commonly still see the signage for Delta 8 in front of stores. But what they have in them has shifted significantly. In short, there is more delta, higher quantities, and increasingly cheaper price points.
What does this generally mean in the long run? More youth accessibility to the products mentioned above and more use among those who might be in search of similar items.
In closing, many of our followers who conduct drug testing might want to look at rotating their drug testing panels to include some of the “deltas”. Also, for many of our readers who do not conduct drug testing but are in a school environment etc. feel free to forward out our newsletter to your followers. Knowledge is power and the more your community knows and understands the better they can be at prevention. Also, don’t forget about our podcasts where we cover much of this info in 20-30 minute sessions.
Remember, you can't stop what you don't know!