Drug Intelligence Center
Domestic Cannabis Cultivation Assessment 2007
Primary Cannabis Cultivation Areas
According to national marijuana eradication data and law enforcement reporting, there are two primary outdoor cultivation regions in the United States: the Western Region, composed of California, Hawaii, Oregon, and Washington, and the Appalachian Region, composed of Kentucky, Tennessee, and West Virginia. Eradication data for 2006 show that 89 percent (5,262,065 of 5,901,880) of outdoor plants eradicated in the United States were eradicated in these seven states (see Table 3, and Map 1 in Appendix B). These states consistently sustain high levels of outdoor cannabis cultivation because their climates are conducive to cannabis cultivation. As a result, cultivators--especially Mexican DTOs in the Western Region and Caucasian independent growers in the Appalachian Region--have established long-standing, entrenched growing operations. Other areas of increasing significance with regard to cannabis cultivation include Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, and North Carolina; these areas have recently experienced significant increases in outdoor cultivation.
Indoor cannabis cultivation appears to be most pervasive in western states, primarily in California and Washington (see Table 4, and Map 2 in Appendix B). Eradication data for 2006 indicate that 61 percent (246,975 of 403,322) of indoor plants eradicated nationally were eradicated in California and Washington alone. Cannabis is cultivated by a variety of growers, including Caucasian criminal groups and independent dealers; however, cultivation by Canada-based Asian DTOs is increasing significantly.
Law enforcement reporting indicates exceptionally high levels of cannabis cultivation (indoor and outdoor combined) in California, Kentucky, Tennessee, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington, and West Virginia. Total cannabis eradication suggests that these seven states constitute the most significant cannabis cultivation states overall (see Table 5, and Map 3 in Appendix B).
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