More fentanyl than heroin now being seized at U.S. border, as fentanyl kills in record numbers

DEA reports it seized "enough fentanyl in 2021 to provide a lethal dose to every American"
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Fentanyl pills.
Fentanyl DEA Northeast Regional Laboratory on October 8, 2019 in New York.
(DON EMMERT/AFP via Getty Images)

More fentanyl than heroin was seized at the U.S. border during fiscal 2021, according to data from U.S. Customs and Border Protection. 

Roughly 11,200 pounds of fentanyl were seized last year, compared with 5,400 pounds of heroine, marking the first time in U.S. history that more fentanyl than heroin has been intercepted. 

Also confiscated at the border were just under 320,000 pounds of marijuana, 190,861 pounds of methamphetamine, and 97,638 pounds of cocaine.

Thus far, in fiscal 2022, 2,158 pounds of fentanyl have been seized, compared with just 277 pounds of heroin.

The explosion of fentanyl being illegally transported into the U.S. goes hand-in-hand with the record number of fentanyl overdoses and deaths that have occurred in the United States over the last several years. In November of 2021, the CDC noted that drug overdose deaths in the U.S. topped 100,000 annually between May 2020 and April 2021. 

A Drug Enforcement Administration report from late 2021 stated that the agency had seized "enough fentanyl in 2021 to provide a lethal dose to every American."

According to facts and data compiled by the organization Families Against Fentanyl, fentanyl is now the number one cause of death for Americans between the ages of 18 and 45, beating out other leading causes including. suicide, COVID-19, and car accidents.