Tuesday, 26th September 2017

Research Articles

Usual Drug Purchasing behaviour

Quantity of drugs normally purchased and amount normally spent per purchase


Note: The intervals specified within histograms below do not contain the entire range of the data.

Cannabis is rarely purchased in amounts of less than one eighth (3.5g), less than 1% of respondents reported spending £5 or less per occasion, and around 5% purchased quantities in the range of £5-£10 (e.g. "sixteenths"), similar proportions would buy half-ounce and ounce quantities and a small minority purchased larger amounts. The modal purchase was 1/8oz for £15 or less, followed by quarter ounces at £25 to £30.


LSD is commonly purchased in individual doses or up to 10-20 doses at a time. Few purchases involved spending in excess of £40 per occasion.

Overwhelmingly the most common response to the question on mushrooms was zero (free), reflecting either gift, or more commonly the fact that they can be picked freely when in season.

£10 was the most common deal on amphetamine, reflecting the occasional or casual use of the drug by most respondents answering the question, and the scarcity of regular and daily users within the samples to date. A small but potentially significant minority of users purchase in ounce quantities.

Ecstasy is most commonly purchased in units of one to five tablets, with a small minority of individuals buying ten or more tablets at a time.

Overwhelmingly the most common quantities of cocaine purchased were grams at £50 or £70, reflecting the more affluent lifestyle commonly associated with users of powdered cocaine. A small proportion bought in fractions of a gram or multiple grams.

The most common "crack" purchase quantity was single rocks, followed by individual grams. There were two few responses to the "crack" purchase price question to form any meaningful conclusions, with only single reports of prices from £5 to £100, consistent with the wide variation in "rock" sizes apparent from forensic reports.

Heroin was again most commonly purchased in £10 or £20 bags, although a larger number of respondents bought in grams than with crack cocaine. The maximum personal heroin purchase was £350, representing between 1/4oz of the drug.

 


Note: Drug Prices and Purchase Data in this section includes a number of early 1998 survey responses not included elsewhere.

Published March 2009.