President Trump thinks drugs cost as much as a Snickers or Butterfinger.
“Drugs are becoming cheaper than candy bars,” Trump said at a news conference Thursday.
Although a proliferation of cheap heroin has helped fuel the nation’s drug epidemic, you can’t buy it for 99 cents — the price of a Twix bar on target.com.
“Unless the price of candy bars went up,” said Melvin Patterson, a Drug Enforcement Administration spokesman, that’s not the case. “But I get what he means. He means it’s very inexpensive to make a purchase … it’s a result of the problem we have with the opiate epidemic.”
Although heroin is not as cheap as a candy bar, in many places it is cheaper than a six-pack of beer or a pack of cigarettes.
The average price for a dime bag — about 10 milligrams — of heroin is $10, though it can be lower or higher in some places, Patterson said. Kevin Coppinger, the sheriff in Essex County, Mass., said it can be as low as $4 or $5 in some places in Massachusetts.
“If you want to go out and get drunk, you might be paying $15 to $16,” Coppinger said. “You can get heroin for as low as $5.”
Marijuana sold on the black market is even more expensive, Patterson said, and can range from $20 to $100 for an ounce.
Authorities say the low price of heroin is helping fuel the nation’s opiate epidemic. The market was flooded with cheap heroin a few years ago as the price of prescription drugs remained high — the street value of a 40-milligram tablet of OxyContin is about $40, an 80-milligram tablet $80. That led some people who were addicted to opiates to turn to much cheaper heroin, which continues to flood into communities across the country.
“That is kind of fueling our opiate epidemic,” Patterson said.