Throughout this fiscal year, the United States Border Patrol has seized enough fentanyl to kill the entire population of the country several times over, officials shared.
Border Patrol Chief Jason Owens shared this week that agents have seized over 2,700 pounds of fentanyl as part of more than 69,000 pounds of narcotics seized between ports of entry.
Along with the fentanyl were 40,000 pounds of marijuana, 13,000 pounds of methamphetamine, and 11,000 pounds of cocaine.
The total amount of fentanyl seized does not include what was collected at ports of entry and is still more than enough to kill everyone in the United States.
While the amount seized between ports of entry highlights the danger of the drug, so far this fiscal year, more than 22,000 pounds of fentanyl has been taken by the border patrol at ports of entry at the southern border.
The drug is primarily produced in Mexico, using Chinese precursors, before it is trafficked across the southern border.
Fentanyl is 50 to 100 times stronger than morphine, cheap to make, and often cut into other drugs, meaning users aren’t aware they are taking it.
To address the issue, the Biden administration has increased its efforts at the borders by going after smugglers, increasing technology at the port of entry, and providing more funding for treatment and prevention efforts for users in the US.
Still, President Biden’s opponents have pointed to the crisis at the border, saying that his inaction has only made the situation worse.
In 2022, more than 100,000 people died from opioid-related overdoses, with fentanyl being the most prominent opioid.