Unification of Conventions on Narcotic Drugs

Sections

Part I
MOST IMPORTANT CURRENT DEFINITIONS
B. PRIMARY NATURAL PRODUCTS ("RAW MATERIALS") 1. Opium
2. Poppy plant material
3. Coca leaves
4. Cannabis
C. MANUFACTURED DRUGS
D. DEFINITIONS OF CERTAIN TERMS 1. Raw materials
2. Production
3. Manufacture
4. Conversion
5. Extraction
6. Estimates
7. Stocks
8. Derivative
9. Compound
10. Preparation
Preparations of the 1931 Convention
Preparations of the 1925 Convention not included in the 1931 Convention
Preparations outside the scope of the 1931 and the 1925 Conventions
Part II - CONSIDERATION OF TERMS FOR ADDICTION-FORMING DRUGS, AND THE TEXT OF OTHER DEFINITIONS
1. Dangerous drugs
2. Narcotic drugs
3. Habit-forming drugs
4. Stupéfiants (French); stupefacients (English)
5. Opiates
6. Drugs capable of producing toxicomania
7. Addiction-forming drugs; drugs of addiction
8. "The drugs" (specified)
9. The "substances" specified
B. PRIMARY NATURAL PRODUCTS ("RAW MATERIALS") 1. Opium
2. Poppy plant material
3. Coca leaves
4. Cannabis
C. MANUFACTURED DRUGS
D. VARIOUS TERMS 1. "Raw materials"
2. Production
3. Manufacture
4. Conversion
5. Extraction
6. Estimates
7. Stocks
8. Derivatives
9. Compound
10. Preparation
Part III APPRAISAL OF STATUS AND CONTENT OF DEFINITIONS
1. Opium
2. Poppy plant material or poppy capsules
3. Coca leaves
4. Cannabis
1. "Raw materials"
2. Production
3. Manufacture
4. Conversion
5. Extraction
6. Estimates
7. Derivative
8. Compound
9. Preparation
Part IV - PROPOSALS A. SUBSTANCES TO BE CONTROLLED
B. Primary Natural Products 1. Opium
2. Poppy plant material
3.·Coca Leaves
4. Cannabis
5. Reservation
C. MANUFACTURED DRUGS
D. VARIOUS TERMS 1. "Raw materials"
2. Production
3. Manufacture
4. Conversion
5. Extraction
6. Estimates
7. Stocks
8. Derivative
9. Compound
10. Preparation

Details

Pages: 33 to 54
Creation Date: 1950/01/01

OFFICIAL SECTION

Unification of Conventions on Narcotic Drugs a

SCOPE OF THE CONVENTION: DEFINITIONS

Page

Part I

MOST IMPORTANT CURRENT DEFINITIONS

A. DEFINITIONS OR STATEMENTS OF THE DRUGS SUBJECT TO INTERNATIONAL CONTROL

The drugs subject to international control have been stated in four ways:

  1. By specific enumeration of the individual drugs (Conventions of 1912, 1925, and 1931);

  2. (a) By inclusion of certaindefinite chemical classes in the enumeration: "other esters of morphine," "other ethers of morphine," "their esters" (of five drugs of group I ( a) (iv)), "the morphine-N-oxide derivatives and the other pentavalent nitrogen morphine derivatives," and "all the esters of ecgonine," as well as all the various salts of the enumerated drugs (1931 Convention) ;

    (b) By inclusion of natural chemical classes in a special article: "the phenanthrene alkaloids of opium" and "the ecgonine alkaloids of coca leaf" (article 11, 1931 Convention).

  3. By providing for control over other drugs having similar ill-effects to those already enumerated.

    (a) "Liable to similar abuse and productive of like ill-effects" (1912 Convention, article 14 ( b)).

    (b) "Liable to similar abuse and productive of similar ill-effects" (1925 Convention, article 10).

    (c) "Liable to the same kind of abuse and productive of the same kind of harmful effects" (1948 Protocol, article 1, paragraph 1).

  4. By defining the drugs to be covered as drugs of addiction: "product . . . capable of producing addiction or . . . convertible into a drug capable of producing addiction" (article 11, paragraph 6, 1931 Convention); "drugs . . . capable of producing addiction" (preamble of the 1948 Protocol); "drug . . . capable of producing addiction or of conversion into a product capable of producing addiction" (article 1, paragraph 2 of the 1948 Protocol).

B. PRIMARY NATURAL PRODUCTS ("RAW MATERIALS") 1. Opium

  1. " ‘Raw opium’ means the spontaneously coagulated juice obtained from the capsules of the Papaver somniferum L., which has only been submitted to the necessary manipulations for packing and transport, whatever its content of morphine" (1931 and 1925 Conventions).

  2. " ‘Medicinal opium’ means raw opium which has undergone the processes necessary to adapt it for medicinal use in accordance with the requirements of the national pharmacopoeia, whether in powder form or granulated or otherwise or mixed with neutral materials" (1931 and 1925 Conventions).

  3. "By ‘prepared opium’ is understood: the product of raw opium, obtained by a series of special operations, especially by dissolving, boiling, roasting, and fermentation, designed to transform it into an extract suitable for consumption. Prepared opium includes dross and all other residues remaining when opium has been smoked" (1912 Convention).

2. Poppy plant material

"The term ‘poppy plant’ shall denote any portion of the plant of the Papaver somniferum L., green or dry, whether capsules, leaves or stalks, which may be used for the extraction of drugs or for medical and scientific purposes other than the manufacture of drugs" (1939 Draft).1

3. Coca leaves

" ‘Coca leaf’ means the leaf of the Erythroxylon Coca Lamarck and the Erythroxylon novogranatense (Morris) Hieronymous and their varieties, belonging to the family of Erythroxylaceae and the leaf of other species of this genus from which it may be found possible to extract cocaine, either directly or by chemical transformation" (1931 and 1925 Conventions).

4. Cannabis

" ‘Indian Hemp’ means the dried flowering or fruiting tops of the pistillate plant Cannabis sativa L., from which the resin has not been extracted, under whatever name they may be designated in commerce" (1925 Convention, article 1).

C. MANUFACTURED DRUGS

  1. " ‘Morphine’ means the principal alkaloid of opium having the chemical formula C 17H 19O 3N" (1931 and 1925 Conventions).

  2. " ‘Diacetylmorphine’ means diacetylmorphine (diamorphine, heroin) having the formula C 21H 23O 5N (C 17H 17(C 2H 3O) 2O 3N)" (1931 Convention). Diacetylmorphine is also defined by implication as an ester of morphine (group I ( a) (ii). 1931 Convention).

"Draft of the Principal Articles which might be embodied in a Convention for Limiting and Controlling the Cultivation of the Opium Poppy and the Production of Raw Opium and Controlling other Raw Materials used in the Manufacture of Opium Alkaloids", O.C./Confidential/46 (b):

  1. " ‘Cocaine’ means methyl-benzoyl laevo-ecgonine ([a] D20° = -16°4 in 20 per cent solution of chloroform) of which the formula is C 17H 21O 4N" (1931 and 1925 Conventions).

  2. " ‘Ecgonine’ means laevo-ecgonine [ a] D20° = -45°6 in 5 per cent solution of water), of which the formula is C 9H 15O 3N.H 2O, and all the derivatives of laevo-ecgonine which might serve industrially for its recovery" (1931 and 1925 Conventions).

  3. "The following drugs are defined by their chemical formulas as set out below:

    "Dihydrohydrooxycodeinone, C 18H 21O 4N;

    "Dihydrocodeinone, C 18H 21O 3N;

    "Dihydromorphinone, C 17H 19O 3N;

    "Acetyldihydrocodeinone or Acetyldemethylodihydrothebaine, C 20H 23O 4N, (C 18H 20(C 2H 3O) O 3N);

    "Dihydromorphine, C 17H 21O 3N;

    "Morphine-N-Oxide, C 17H 19O 4N;

    "Thebaine, C 19H 21O 3N;

    "Methylmorphine (codeine), C 18H 21O 3N, (C 17H 18(CH 3O) O 2N);

    "Ethylmorphine, C 19H 23O 3N, (C 17H 18(C 2H 5O)O 2N);

    "Benzylmorphine, C 24H 25O 3N, (C 17H 18(C 7H 7O)-O 2N)." (1931 Convention)

    Several of these drugs are also defined, in effect, in terms of the known commercial products, in group I ( a) (iv):

    "Dihydrohydrooxycodeinone (of which the substance registered under the name of eucodal is a salt);

    "Dihydrocodeinone (of which the substance registered under the name of dicodide is a salt);

    "Dihydromorphinone (of which the substance registered under the name of dilaudide is a salt);

    "Acetyldihydrocodeinone or acetyldemethylodihydrothebaine (of which the substance registered under the name of acedicone is a salt);

    "Dihydromorphine (of which the substance registered under the name of paramorphan is a salt);

    "Morphine-N-oxide (registered trade name genomorphine)" (1931 Convention).

    In addition, morphine-N-oxide is further defined, by implication, as a "pentavalent nitrogen morphine derivative" (group I ( a) (iv)); and benzylmorphine, methylmorphine, and ethylmorphine as "ethers of morphine" (group I (b)). (1931 Convention.)

  4. Other addiction-forming drugs manufactured from phenanthrene alkaloids of opium.

    (a) Dihydrocodeine, C 18H 23O 3N. (Known commercially as paracodine) This substance was omitted, apparently by inadvertence, from the 1931 Convention.

    (b) Acetyldihydrocodeine, C 20H 25O 4N, (C 18H 22O 2N(O CO CH 3)). A trade name of the hydrochloride is acetylcodone.

    (c) Methyldihydromorphinone. C 18H 21O 3N (known as metopon).

  5. Synthetic addiction-forming drugs.

    (a) 1 - methyl - 4- phenylpiperidine - 4- carboxylic-acid ethyl ester (known as dolantin, demerol, pethidine, and by other names).

    (b) Other drugs of the "dolantin" type: 1-methyl-4-metahydroxyphenyl-piperidine-4-carboxylic-acid ethyl ester (known as bemidone); 1-methyl-4-metahydroxyphenyl-4-propionyl-piperidine (known as keto-bemidone); α-1, 3-dimethyl-4-phenyl-4-propionoxy-piperidine (known as NU-1196); β-l,3-dimethyl-4-phenyl-4-propionoxy-piperidine (known as NU-1779).

    (c) 4,4 - diphenyl - 6 - dimethylamino - heptanone - 3 (known as amidone, methadon, and by other names).

    (d) Other drugs of the "amidone" type: 4,4-diphenyl-5-methyl-6-dimethylamino-hexanone-3 (known as isoamidone, isomethadone, etc.); 4,4-diphenyl-6-dimethylamino-heptanol-3; 4,4-diphenyl-6-dimethylamino-3-acetoxy-heptane; 4,4-diphenyl-6-morpholino-heptanone-3 (known as C.B.11).

The World Health Organization has recommended that these drugs be put under the control of the 1948 Protocol.2

D. DEFINITIONS OF CERTAIN TERMS 1. Raw materials

Not defined in the conventions, but the official commentary on the 1931 Convention gives the following:

"The term ‘raw material’ covers raw opium or opium in any form (medicinal, prepared, etc.), poppy straw or any part of the poppy plant or coca leaves or any other substance from which any of the drugs may be produced."3

This definition, however, applies, in full, only to the 1931 Convention.

2. Production

Not formally defined in the conventions, but now commonly used as applying only to the production of "raw materials", or primary natural products, excluding manufactured drugs. There is an indirect and incomplete definition in the 1936 Convention, article 1, in connexion with "extraction" (see 5, below).-

Document WHO/HFD/9, 10 February 1949.

Historical and Technical Study of the 1931 Convention, p. 200.

3. Manufacture

Not formally defined in full. "The term ‘manufacture’ shall include any process of refining" (1931 Convention).

4. Conversion

"The term ‘conversion’ shall denote the transformation of a drug by a chemical process, with the exception of the transformation of alkaloids into their salts. When one of the drugs is converted into another of the drugs this operation shall be considered as conversion in relation to the first-mentioned drug and as manufacture in relation to the other" (1931 Convention).

5. Extraction

"For the purposes of the present Convention the word ‘extractionrsquo; connotes an operation whereby a narcotic drug is separated from the substance or compound of which it forms part, without involving any actual manufacture or conversion properly so called. This definition of the term ‘extraction’ is not intended to include the processes whereby raw opium is obtained from the opium poppy, these being covered by the term ‘production’ " (1936 Convention).

6. Estimates

"The term ‘estimates’ shall denote estimates furnished in accordance with articles 2 to 5 of this Convention, and, unless the context otherwise requires, shall include supplementary estimates" (1931 Convention).

7. Stocks

  1. "The term ‘reserve stocks’ in relation to any of the drugs shall denote the stocks required (i) for the normal domestic consumption of the country or territory in which they are maintained, (ii) for conversion in that country or territory, and (iii) for export" (1931 Convention).

  2. "The term ‘Government stocks’ in relation to any of the drugs shall denote stocks kept under Government control for the use of the Government and to meet exceptional circumstances" (1931 Convention).

8. Derivative

The Committee of Experts of the 1931 Conference unanimously decided that in scientific language the English term "derivative" signifies group-or-series-relationships and not necessarily the origin.4

Records of the 1931 Conference, vol. II, p. 133, annex 9.

This is clearly the meaning in "the morphine-N-oxide derivatives, and other pentavalent nitrogen morphine derivatives" (French in this case composes, not derives) and in "all the derivatives of laevo-ecgonine which might serve industrially for its recovery" (1931 Convention).

9. Compound

The noun "compound" is used in the plural in article 13,2( b), of the 1931 Convention, with the meaning "pharmaceutical preparations." In the preamble to the 1948 Protocol the phrase "compounds containing these drugs" is used in addition to "their preparations." In Article 1,2 of the 1936 Convention "compound" is used, in the singular, in addition to "substance", in defining "extraction" (see 5, above). The meaning is not clear in either of these last two cases. The French texts use three different terms. (For discussion of the texts, see part II, D, 9.)

10. Preparation

There is no formal definition of this term, but at first glance it appears to be used in its ordinary pharmaceutical sense throughout. Closer examination shows two exceptions. In the 1925 Convention, article 11, the term at first appears to have the pharmaceutical meaning, but the examples given between parentheses are simply names for the crude resin of Cannabis, no more pharmaceutical "preparations" than opium is. This usage will be discussed fully in part II,B,4. In the 1931 Convention, article 1,2, "preparations made directly from raw or medicinal opium and containing more than 20 per cent of morphine" might at first be taken to refer to exceptionally strong pharmaceutical preparations. However, reference to the discussions and the commentary 5 shows that the phraseology was intended to exclude the ordinary pharmaceutical preparations made by solution, percolation, mixing, etc., and to take in, instead, manufactured drugs of the pantopon type. While these last can be called "preparations" by using the term in its broadest sense, they are not "preparations" of opium in the sense of being prepared from opium by simple pharmaceutical processes. They are manufactured drugs just as much as morphine itself, and they are not made "directly" from opium in any very different sense from morphine itself:

Aside from article 1, the term "preparation" signifies in the 1931 Convention pharmaceutical preparations made from the manufactured drugs of article 1. However, this Convention introduced great complications of classification. In the 1925 Convention, aside from article 11, the classification was fairly simple. The 1931 Convention produced a different and more complicated system, and at the same time tried to combine it with the system of the 1925 Convention, excluding Indian hemp and the ordinary pharmaceutical preparations made directly from opium. The resultant confusion is instructive, not only with respect to the meaning of "preparation", but also in regard to some other definitions. The following analysis is therefore presented.

Historical and Technical Study, pp. 36, 37.

Preparations of the 1931 Convention

A. MADE "DIRECTLY" (OR "DIRECT") FROM OPIUM OR COCA LEAF

(a) Defined as "drugs"; subject to full control

  1. So-called "preparations" containing over 20 per cent of morphine; actually manufactured drugs of the pantopon type.

  2. Ordinary pharmaceutical preparations made from coca leaf and containing over 0.1 per cent of cocaine.

B. PREPARATIONS MADE FROM "THE DRUGS"

(a) Subject to some further control

(i) Made from group I drugs

  1. Preparations containing more than 0.2 per cent of morphine or more than 0.1 per cent of cocaine and all preparations of other group I drugs, when not exempted by article 8 of the 1925 Convention, are subject to the provisions of the 1925 Convention by its article 4 and by article 13, 1 (a), of the 1931 Convention; preparations containing 0.2 per cent, or less of morphine or 0.1 per cent or less of cocaine and coming under article 13, 1 (b), of the 1931 Convention, are also subject to the same provisions. (Preparations of diacetylmorphine not exempted under article 8 fall in this class as far as it goes, but constitute another class by reason of special provisions.)

  2. Preparations of diacetylmorphine:

    (a) Preparations not exempted under article 8 are subject to the controls of the 1925 Convention and also to the special restrictions of article 10 of the 1931 Convention;

    (b) Preparations exempted under Article 8 of the 1925 Convention 6 are possibly still subject to control in international trade for signatories of the 1931 Convention, notwithstanding the language of article 13, 1 ( a), because article 10, providing a special regime for diacetylmorphine and its preparations, makes no provision for exemptions.

    (ii) Made from group II drugs

  3. Preparations not adapted to normal therapeutic use, are subject only to the provisions of chapter V of the 1925 Convention, by article 13, 2 ( b), of the 1931.Convention (article 13, 2 ( c), of the 1931 Convention seems not to apply to preparations, although the exemption of article 13, 2 ( c) (ii) does not include all the paragraphs mentioned).

See document C.114.M.54.1932.III.

Ibid.

(b) Exempted from further control when made

  1. ( i) Preparations containing 0.2 per cent or less of morphine or 0.1 per cent or less of cocaine, except those included in class 3 above by article 13, 1 ( b), of the 1931 Convention.

    ( ii)"Compounds" of group II drugs adapted to a normal therapeutic use, exempted by article 13, 2 ( b), of the 1931 Convention (article 13, 2 ( c), seems not to apply to preparations, although the exemption of article 13, 2 ( c) (ii), does not include all the paragraphs mentioned).

    ( iii) Preparations exempted under article 8 of the 1925 Convention, except the heroin preparations.7 (Notwithstanding the language of article 13, 1 ( a), of the 1931 Convention, these diacetylmorphine preparations are probably still subject to control for signatories of the 1931 Convention because of the special regime established by its article 10.)

Preparations of the 1925 Convention not included in the 1931 Convention

A. INDIAN HEMP PREPARATIONS (SUBJECT TO CONTROL)

  1. Preparations of pharmaceutical type

    7. "Galenical preparations" (extract and tincture) of Indian hemp (article 4 (f); also preparations having extract or tincture of Indian hemp as a base, reserving certain exemptions.8

  2. So-called "preparations"

    8. "Preparations" of article 11, 1: "the resin prepared from it (Indian hemp)"; "ordinary preparations of which the resin forms the base (such as hashish, esrar, chiras, djamba)"; actually the crude resin.

B. OPIUM PREPARATIONS (SUBJECT TO CONTROL)

9.Preparations made directly from raw or medicinal opium and containing over 0.2 per cent but not over 20 per cent of morphine. These are held to fall under article 4 ( d) of the 1925 Convention, when made by legitimate manufacturers, but not under article 13, 1 ( a) of the 1931 Convention.

See article 10 of the 1925 Convention and document C.L.161.1939.XI.

Preparations outside the scope of the 1931 and the 1925 Conventions

A. NOT COVERED BY ANY CONVENTION

Preparations made from opium, coca leaf, or Indian hemp, but wholly exempt

10. (i) Preparations made directly from opium or coca leaf and containing 0.2 per cent or less of morphine or 0.1 per cent or less of cocaine; except that: ( a) if a preparation is made from medicinal opium rather than raw opium the material is subject to the 1925 Convention; (b) if any preparations are merely dilute solutions or simple dilutions of opium or coca leaf extract they may come under article 13, 1 ( b), of the 1931 Convention, though this is not clear.

(ii) Indian hemp preparations for external use; exemption reserved.9

B. SUBJECT TO THE 1948 PROTOCOL

11. "Preparations and compounds containing these drugs" are included with the drugs brought under control in the preamble of the 1948 Protocol, and are not thereafter mentioned separately.

Part II - CONSIDERATION OF TERMS FOR ADDICTION-FORMING DRUGS, AND THE TEXT OF OTHER DEFINITIONS

A. TERMS FOR THE DRUGS SUBJECT TO INTERNATIONAL CONTROL

Many attempts have been made to use some single term or fairly short expression to name or delimit the drugs requiring international control.

Chief of these are: (1) dangerous drugs; (2) narcotic drugs; narcotics; (3) habit-forming drugs; (4) stupefiants (French); (5) opiates; (6) drugs capable of producing toxicomania, or narcomania; (7) addiction-forming drugs; drugs of addiction; (8) "the drugs" (specified); (9) the substances specified.

1. Dangerous drugs

Used in: ( a) title of the "Advisory Committee on Traffic in Opium and Other Dangerous Drugs" of the League of Nations; ( b) resolution of the Tenth Assembly of the League of Nations which called for the 1931 Conference; ( c) title of the 1936 Conference and Convention; ( d) often in national legislation.

This term conveys nothing as to why certain drugs are dangerous in such a way as to require international control. It has the advantage of possibly being applicable to drugs that are dangerous only because convertible into addiction-forming drugs. Its use in national legislation sometimes extends beyond the drugs under international control.

2. Narcotic drugs

Used in ( a) the title of the Conference and Convention of 1931, and in the preamble; ( b) article 1 of the 1936 Convention, which defines the term, for the purposes of that Convention, as meaning "the drugs and substances" to which provisions of the 191s2, 1925, and 1931 Conventions "are now or hereafter may be applicable"; ( c) in legislation of the. United States; ( d) in the title "Commission on Narcotic Drugs"; ( e) generally as the translation of the French term "stupefiants," ( f) generally in discussions as the English term for drugs of the type, frequently shortened to "narcotics."

See document C.L.161.1939.XI.

The term "narcotic drugs" has been used so much to cover the drugs to which the Conventions are primarily applicable, that it has acquired this special meaning. In general language "narcotic" means having certain sense-deadening effects, and such drugs as scopolamine and even the barbiturates may also be called narcotic. Webster's Dictionary gives belladonna, as well as opium, as an example of a narcotic drug. The Shorter Oxford Dictionary gives for the adjective merely "Having the effect of inducing stupor, sleep, or insensibility," and for the substantive, "Med. A substance which when swallowed, inhaled, or injected into the system induces drowsiness; sleep, stupefaction, or insensibility, according to its strength and the amount taken." Nevertheless, in a suitable context, the special meaning - drugs that are subject to control because of immediate or threatened addiction effects - is usually clear.

Sometimes the term "narcotic" may be considered too restrictive. At its second session the Commission on Narcotic Drugs deleted "narcotic" from the draft of the protocol that was then under examination.10The feeling seemed to be that if the general meaning were understood, then sense-deadening effects would have to be proved for any drug that it was desired to put under control, while a special definition might likewise tie the hands of the control authorities. This decision in no way halted the use of "narcotic drugs" and "narcotics" as the usual terms in the discussions of the Commission.

See document E/CN.7/106, page 16.

Perhaps more attention should be given the short form "narcotics "("narcotic" as a noun). In the proper context, this is understood throughout the English-speaking world as signifying the addiction-forming drugs that require control. "Narkotik "(plural "narkotiki") is also the Russian term. Moreover the term is a combining form (narcotism, narcomania, etc.), and this is true even for other languages. French for example has "narcomanie" in fairly common use although the term "stupéfiants" is preferred for the addiction-forming drugs themselves. There are many advantages in the use of the short, simple term "narcotics ."

3. Habit-forming drugs

In the effort to be more precise in regard to the nature of the drugs concerned, the term "habit-forming" has often been used in discussions. The term is far too weak, since habits may be formed for all sorts of drugs, some even harmless or nearly so. This has been recognized to the extent that "habit-forming" is often combined with one of the other terms, so that we find references to "dangerous habit-forming drugs" and to "habit-forming narcotic drugs."

4. Stupéfiants (French); stupefacients (English)

The French term "stupéfiant''seems to have given more general satisfaction than the English "narcotic drug," or "narcotic" as an adjective. "Stupéfiant" has been defined as a poison which has sedative properties, produces euphoria, and is habit-forming. 11 It has been suggested that the English equivalent would require "dangerous habit-forming narcotic drug." 12

French-English dictionaries give "stupefacient" and "stupefactive" as English equivalents of "stupéfiant." Peculiarly enough, these English terms have not been used in the Conventions nor even in discussions. They are, in fact, not very common words in comparison to "narcotic." This, however, might even be an advantage: "stupefacient" could be adopted as exactly equivalent to the French "stupéfiant," for the purposes of a Convention, without doing any violence to common speech. Both "stupefacient" and "stupéfiant" can be used as either adjective or noun.

"'Estupefacientes"' has been the Spanish term used in translations of the Conventions.

"Stupéfiant" (as also "narcotic drug") was rejected at the 1931 Conference as a general term for all the drugs covered, in part because of the difficulty of framing a good definition, but chiefly because it was felt that the term should not be stretched to cover drugs requiring control merely because of convertibility into true "stupéfiants." This difficulty arises with most terms but should not prevent the use of some simple word or phrase for the drugs which make the control necessary and which require a regime of complete control.

Records of the 1931 Conference, vol. II, p. 88.

Historical and Technical Study of 1931 Convention, p. 2.

A keener objection can be made that "stupefacient "and "stupéfiant "are terms relating to the stupefying action of the drugs, whereas the addicts use them for other reasons, and cocaine, heroin, even morphine do not stupefy those who take them for addiction purposes. All discussion tends to point out that it is the addiction effects which make it necessary to control these drugs, and presumably definitions and terms should relate to these addiction effects.

5. Opiates

United States law has adopted "opiates" as a general term to cover synthetic drugs brought under the Federal narcotics laws, the test being "addiction-forming or addiction-sustaining liabilities similar to morphine or cocaine."13 The term has some historical justification, and was also used by the cartel of European manufacturers (1930 and some years thereafter) for their "international agreement on opiates." It possibly has the advantage that it is not likely to be misused carelessly for drugs not acutally under the law. However, it does not seem especially suitable for drugs requiring international control. It emphasizes sleep-inducing and pain-relieving properties by the implied relation to opium, at least as much as addiction-forming properties. Moreover, it seems inappropriate for drugs acting like cocaine or cannabis rather than opium. In such cases even the type of addiction is different. Of course "opiates" is quite suitable as a term comprising opium itself, all the manufactured narcotic drugs obtained from opium ,preparations of opium, etc., but not as a general term for the drugs under international control.

6. Drugs capable of producing toxicomania

This expression has generally been used in French ( susceptible d’engendrer la toxicomanie)in place of "capable of producing addiction." In a few cases it has also been used in the English version, e.g.,by the Health Committee of the League of Nations in recommending control over benzoylmorphine and other esters of morphine, and dilaudid.14

Drugs liable to produce narcomania

This is a more restricted version of the same idea, and seems to merit more consideration than it has had hitherto. "Narcomanie" may also be used in French as a more specific term than the general "toxicomanie." The term is practically the same in Russian also ("narkomaniya"). The chief objection from the point of view of our present examination is that "drugs liable to produce narcomania" is a somewhat cumbersome phrase, more nearly a definition than a simple term of convenience. "Narcomania" is to be understood as a morbid craving for the "narcotic." It has the disadvantage that it has occasionally been used in the sense of a mania produced by a narcotic.

U. S. Annual Report, 1946.

Document C.L. 113.1932.XI., annex O.C.1411 (1).

7. Addiction-forming drugs; drugs of addiction

The present tendency is to define drugs to be covered in the future as those "capable of producing addiction or of conversion into drugs capable of producing addiction" (see part I, A, 4). "Addiction-forming drugs" may well be used as a shorter form of "drugs capable of producing addiction", probably preferable to "narcotic drugs" or "stupefacients", and certainly more definite than "dangerous drugs". Like the last term, "drugs of addiction" might possibly be taken to include some drugs "capable of conversion into drugs capable of producing addiction", as well as the drugs primarily "capable of producing addiction", if it is necessary to cover "convertible" drugs in the general provisions.

The term "addiction-forming drugs" is the one generally used throughout this document. While not as short as "narcotics" or "stupefacients" its meaning is definite without requiring a special definition, and in particular it focuses attention on the fact that the drugs that have to be controlled are not, basically, those that narcotize or stupefy but those that create addiction. Of course, thebaine and ecgonine are not in themselves addiction-forming and codeine and dionine only feebly so; but such drugs are taken under control because of their relationship to the true addiction-forming drugs.

The social aspect of addiction should be considered dominant in this connexion. The medical definition of "addiction", according to some authorities, requires physical withdrawal symptoms, as a distinction from "habituation", which then is said to imply only psychic craving. For the purposes of this document harmful habit-forming drugs which are socially dangerous and create intense pyschic "addiction" are included in "addiction-forming drugs".

8. "The drugs" (specified)

The 1931 Conference abandoned the attempt to choose a more specific term, and simply stated, before enumerating them, "The term ‘the drugs’ shall denote the following drugs whether partly manufactured or completely refined".

This is generally referred to as a definition, "for the purposes of the Convention"; but properly speaking it is merely the statement of an abbreviation: "the drugs" is simply used as a short form for "the drugs specified in article 1, paragraph 2."

In the 1948 Protocol the term "drugs" is used in its ordinary sense; qualified by other words when necessary; and the reference to "the drugs" of the 1931 Convention in article 1 of the Protocol is given in full as "the drugs specified in article 1, paragraph 2, of the said Convention.''

Although the special sense of "the drugs" was a convenience for the 1931 Convention, it was a limitation of a well-known term, and has possibly had the unfortunate result of suggesting that only manufactured substances can be drugs.

There is surely a question whether the convenience of such a short term as "the drugs" overbalances all objections to using it in a special abbreviated sense throughout a convention. (The French text of the 1931 Convention retains quotation marks for "drogues" throughout, as a mark of the restricted sense.) Especially for the new single convention it would seem almost as simple to devote a particular article to the enumeration or definition of the drugs to be covered by a certain regime, and then to refer to "the drugs specified in article . . .", or even, for short, to "the drugs of article . . .", (or "the drugs of annex..."). By properly qualifying the term "drugs" whenever it is used, no definition or statement of a special sense is necessary. The word by itself then retains its full meaning and will cover crude drugs such as opium, coca leaves, and cannabis, as well as manufactured drugs.

9. The "substances" specified

The term "substances" has been used a number of times in the conventions. Any particular meaning has been given in each instance by qualifying words, without any general restriction to a particular sense, as for "the drugs" in the 1931 Convention. For example, article 4 of the 1925 Convention states, "The provisions of the present chapter apply to the following substances" (which are then listed); articles 5 and 6 do not then refer merely to "the substances" but use the full explanatory phrase, "the substances to which this chapter applies".

There seems to be no advantage in using "substances" in lieu of "drugs", but the word is needed in some cases for substances that may or may not be drugs, as in article 18 of the 1931 Convention, which refers to drugs "converted into non-narcotic substances".

A use which at first appears odd occurs in the 1936 Convention, which after defining "narcotic drugs" to mean "the drugs and substances" to which provision of preceding Conventions "are now or hereafter may be applicable", in its article 10 says that "Any narcotic drugs as well as any substances and instruments intended for the commission of any of the offences referred to in article 2 shall be liable to seizure and confiscation". Here the word "substances" is modified by the phrase "intended for the commission of any of the offences re- ferred to in article 2", and does not refer to narcotic or prohibited substances (already included in the term "narcotic drugs"), but to such things as laboratory reagents used for illicit manufacture, etc.

It must be noted that if "drugs" is used in a specialized sense without qualifying words, it cannot be used otherwise in. the same Convention, and "substances", or some other term, has to be substituted for the general sense.

B. PRIMARY NATURAL PRODUCTS ("RAW MATERIALS") 1. Opium

(a) "Raw Opium" was 'defined in the 1912 Convention, the definition being the same as that later used except that the words "whatever its content of morphine" were added in 1925. The "Historical and Technical Study" of the 1931 Convention (p. 44) says that these words were inserted in order to prevent raw opium with a natural morphine content of 10 per cent being regarded as medicinal opium. However, the definition of medicinal opium in the 1925 and 1931 Conventions does not include any mention of the percentage of morphine-this occurs in the 1912 Convention, and then only as a minimum (not less than 10 per cent of morphine). The idea seems to have been erroneously based on the international "Agreement respecting unification of Pharmacopoeial Formulas for Potent drugs," signed at Brussels, 29 November 1906.15 and the later revised Agreement signed at Brussels, 20 August 1929.16 These provided that Pulvis Opii (powdered opium) should contain 10 per cent of morphine; but many countries are not bound by this provision and in any case it did not mean that there could be no other kind of medicinal opium. In fact, raw opium and medicinal opium can be identical: the United States Pharmacopoeia, for example, includes opium which is simply raw opium with a specified minimum content of morphine (9.5 per cent). The words "whatever its content of morphine, therefore fail to make the distinction sought for.

The "manipulations" referred to in the definition of raw opium have been interpreted to include "standardization, conditioning or grading with a view to securing a uniform moisture or morphine content".17 However, the definition was written in 1925, when there was practically no standardization in the present sense; and one's impression on reading the definition would normally be that manipulations only for packing and transport should not include the mixing, blending, drying, and forming into new cakes, that constitute the present standardization procedures of the national monopolies. Perhaps taking into account manipulations for the purposes of "commerce" would be sufficient, and even include the manipulations for packing and transport. The definition should not suggest that raw opium must have been manipulated. It might therefore read as follows:

British and Foreign State Papers, vol. 99, p. 179.

League of Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 98, 1930, p. 127.

Historical and Technical Study of the 1931 Convention, p. 44.

"Raw opium" means the spontaneously coagulated juice from the capsules of Papaver somniferum L.,. untreated or subjected only to manipulations necessary for the purposes of commerce.

The possibility of a radical simplification of opium definitions will be considered in part, III, B, 1.

(b) Medicinal opium. The definition of the 1925 and 1931 Conventions, quoted in part I, A, 1, appears to contain many superfluous words. The following would seem to be sufficient:

"Medicinal opium" is opium that meets the requirements of the national pharmacopoeia.

(c) Prepared opium. The 1912 Convention defined "prepared opium" by describing the opium prepared for smoking as known in the Far East. When, at its ninth session (1926) the Advisory Committee on Traffic in Opium and Other Dangerous Drugs of the League of Nations considered the question of the "lula" or "kalam" opium of Iraq, it was recognized that there was a wide gap between the definitions of "raw opium" and "prepared opium", so that, as Mr. van Wettum (Netherlands) put it, "no one could state under what terms of the Convention such Opium fell".18 Apparently the opium in question was similar to the stick opium of Iran, which is (or was until recently) used for consumption by either eating or smoking. This latter is essentially raw opium, but has been submitted to manipulations a little more than "only . . . the necessary manipulations for packing and transport". Although prepared for consumption it in no way comes under the definition of "prepared opium", for it has not been obtained by dissolving, boiling, roasting, or fermentation, nor is it an extract at all.19

What is really needed is prohibition of the preparation of opium for smoking, and of the export of any opium for this purpose. The definition of the product should be unnecessary, but it might well be declared contraband, and subject to seizure in all places and circumstances.

"Dross" means the residue remaining 'when opium has been smoked. There is no point in distinguishing it from "other residues" and including it under "prepared opium" as in the 1912 Convention. In fact, "dross" was used as an independent term in article V of the 1925 Agreement.

Minutes of the Advisory Committee, 9th session, 1926, p. 65.

Minutes of the Advisory Committee, 17th session, 1933, p. 37.

2. Poppy plant material

The dried poppy plant material used for manufacturing morphine has been generally called "poppy straw" in questionnaires and discussions, rather than "poppy plant" as in the definition quoted in Part I, B, 2. The term "poppy straw" has been very inclusively defined to take in all parts of the plant used for the extraction of alkaloids, but is frequently misunderstood as applying principally if not exclusively to the stalks of the plant. In actual fact the stalks are excluded as much as possible. The material really used nowadays is the chaff from threshing out the seeds, primarily the capsule chaff, though a little of the upper stem may be included. For the sake of inclusiveness, perhaps the best term for use in the Convention, with reference to the raw material for manufacturing alkaloids, will be "poppy plant material''. The only explanation or definition that might be necessary is to refer this term to Papaver somniferum. The same is true of the use of the term "poppy capsules" when reference is made to their use as a drug.

3. Coca leaves

In regard to this definition, it may be noted that neither "Lamarck" nor "Hieronymus" should be italicized, as is done in the texts of the 1925 and 1931 Conventions respectively. The wording of the definition is somewhat awkward, inasmuch as reference is made to "the family of Erythroxylaceae" and then to "this genus". Probably the words "belonging to the family of Erythroxylaceae" could just as well be omitted.

4. Cannabis

The definition of "Indian hemp" in the 1925 Convention has long been considered less than satisfactory. The League of Nations Subcommittee of the Advisory Committee on Traffic in Opium and other Dangerous Drugs, which studied the problem of "Indian hemp", was called the "Sub-Committee on Cannabis". In O.C/ Cannabis/3, Geneva, 12 April 1939, report presented by Dr. J. Bouquet, the definition of "Indian hemp" given by the Convention was discussed in chapter IX, and considered quite unsatisfactory.

The definition apparently was framed with the "ganja" of India in mind, and originally did not precisely cover anything else. In India, large plantations of hemp are grown, from which the staminate plants are carefully weeded out, in the belief that a more copious production of more potent resin is thus obtained. This is the best quality of "ganja", a term which is always limited to the pistillate tops. Some definitions have even been limited to the unfertilized pistillate tops. In fact the definition as first proposed omitted reference to the "fruiting" tops; 20 and during the discussion the statement was made (in accordance with a common belief at that time) that "only the unfertilized female flowers are able to produce the resinous matter, as fertilization destroys the active principle of the plant".21

Records of the 1925 Conference, vol. II, p. 297.

Ibid., vol. I, p. 133.

Fortunately the word unfertilized was not included or implied in the definition adopted. The British delegate pointed out that there were administrative difficulties in regard to prosecution if the definition was made too narrow. He also noted that "male and female plants were intermixed in the manufacture of bhang", but endorsed the idea that "the male plant had no effect".22 The definition finally adopted was based on that of the British Pharmacopoeia.23 The Pharmacopoeia of course defined a drug meeting certain standards for medical purposes, and did not necessarily imply that other forms would be inactive.

In fact, the staminate plant, as well as the pistillate, produces physiologically active resin. In most countries, no attempt is made to uproot the staminate plants or prevent the fertilization. The staminate plants die soon after shedding their pollen, so that later in the year any tops gathered are from the pistillate plants. Early in the season, tops may be pickedwith no attention to whether they are pistillate or staminate-in fact, the plants are virtually indistinguishable before flowering begins. Terms such as bhang, kif, dagga and marihuana are general, and signify the crude hemp drug, not necessarily a particular type of it.

The crude drug most often does consist of the "dried flowering or fruiting tops of the pistillate plant". Such a definition, however, is merely descriptive of the usual product and in no way inclusive. Almost every word is such as to cause administrative difficulties in prosecutions.

No possible benefit can be derived from requiring enforcement officers to prove that a seized drug corresponds to such a definition. Chapter IV, article 11, of the 1925 Convention refers to "Indian hemp and the resin prepared from it" (not Cannabis resin as such); and it would be quite impossible to prove that an extracted resin which had been seized in the illicit traffic had necessarily been prepared from "the dried flowering or fruiting tops of the pistillate plant".

The resin could be extracted just as readily from fresh, undried tops by means of a suitable solvent. The tops might be picked before flowering had begun. Indeed, the resin might be extracted from some other part of the plant, though the tops bear most of it. The staminate plants also produce active resin.

The definition finally suggested in O.C./Cannabis/3, report of Dr. Bouquet, Geneva, 12 April 1939, was:

Ibid., vol. II, p. 298.

Ibid., vol. II, p. 318.

"Indian hemp means the plant Cannabis sativa L. and its resin, and officinal and non-officinal preparations thereof, excluding the mature decorticated stalks, the textile fibres which they furnish, and likewise the decorticated seeds, and the oil and cakes derived therefrom."

This definition includes the whole plant and then excludes parts and products of it. The term "Indian hemp" besides indicating that the ganja of India was in mind, is somewhat ambiguous. Two or three fibre plants of India, entirely distinct from Cannabis sativa, and a North American plant as well, are frequently known as "Indian hemp". Along with its ambiguity the term suggests that the drug-producing hemp is different from ordinary hemp, although the definition is in terms of Cannabis sativa, which is ordinary hemp.

The scientific term is "Cannabis". This applies to the drug and also to the plant. The great majority of botanists consider that there is only one species of the genus, Cannabis sativa Linnaeus. A few botanists consider that Cannabis indica Lamarck, which according to the majority view is only a variety of Cannabis sativa, should be considered a separate species. In any case, "Cannabis" designates the plants of this genus, whether one species or two. Other names are sometimes used- Cannabis americana, Cannabis mexicana, etc.-but these are certainly mere varieties (e.g., Cannabis sativa var. mexicana), and have not been claimed by botanists to be separate species.

The following is suggested:

Cannabis sativa shall be the term used for the hemp plant, Cannabis sativa Linnaeus, and shall include its variety indica, sometimes known as Cannabis indica Lamarck. "Cannabis drug" shall be the term used for any addiction-forming drug obtained therefrom.

In discussions, when the distinction between the plant and the drug is made by the context, the simple term "Cannabis" can be used.

The drug may also be defined in terms of the resin:

"Cannabis drug" means any resin-bearing part of the plant Cannabis sativa (except that the stalks shall be exempt when used solely for fibre production and not as a drug nor as a source of resin), the resin itself, and any addiction-forming drug derived from the resin.

The language of article 11 of the 1925 Convention in regard to the resin is confusing:

"The Contracting Parties undertake: (a) to prohibit the export of the resin obtained from Indian hemp and the ordinary preparations of which the resin forms the base (such as hashish, esrar, chiras, djamba) to countries which have prohibited their use . . ."

O.C./Cannabis/3, p. 98.

Aside from the peculiarity of prohibiting the export only of the "ordinary" preparations, one would at first suppose "preparations of which the resin forms the base" to be those confections, preparations of butter, etc., in which the resin is incorporated; but the examples given-hashish, esrar, chiras, and djamba-are simply the crude resin as separated by mechanical means. (At least they were intended to be, but according to Dr. Bouquet "djamba" is simply the Brazilian term for the crude cannabis drug in its natural state, and there is some question about "esrar".)24 The word "basis" was originally used instead of "base".

The way the expression would ordinarily be understood is shown by a rewritten version in O.C/Cannabis/ 7, 22 April 1939, "Present Position in Regard to Cannabis'':

"Lastly, the Sub-Committee will no doubt discuss the question of possible measures of supervision in respect of ordinary preparations of which the resin forms the base (various preparations of charas, chira, hashish, esrar, etc.), because, although they are not exported, these multitudinous preparations-sweetmeats, electuaries, etc.-are usually made from smuggled charas, chira, hashish, esrar, etc."

However, this is clearly not the meaning of "preparations of which the resin forms the base" in the Convention. The intention was to prohibit the export of the resin, whether refined or in its usual crude form as exemplified by charas, chira, hashish, etc.

C. MANUFACTURED DRUGS

  1. Morphine. The fact that morphine was defined as "the principal alkaloid of opium" (together with its chemical formula) does not mean that it would have to be obtained from opium to come within the definition. This is the only logical conclusion, and was moreover a ruling of the Health Section of the League of Nations when this question was raised with reference to application of the 1925 Convention.25 In any case the 1931 Convention (article 1) provides that "The substances mentioned in this paragraph shall be considered as drugs even if produced by a synthetic process."

  2. Diacetylmorphine. To say that " 'diacetylmorphine' means diacetylmorphine", as does the 1925 Convention, is somewhat unnecessary. It arises from the fact that the sentence was originally written as a definition of "heroin". It would be more to the point to recognize in the definition that diacetylmorphine is an ester of morphine; thus: "Diacetylmorphine" (also known as "diamorphine" and "heroin") means the diacetyl ester of morphine having the formula C 21H 23O 5N(or C 17H 17(C 2H 3O) 2O 3N).

  3. Cocaine. There does not appear to be any necessity for stating the specific rotation, when the name in terms of chemical groups and the elemental formula are both given.

C.H. 851, Geneva, 24 February 1930.

  1. Ecgonine. Statement of the specific rotation does not appear to be necessary. It is quite inappropriate to include "derivatives of laevo-ecgonine" under the term "ecgonine" itself, particularly when the term "ecgonine alkaloids" was also used in the 1931 Convention (article 11).

  2. Other alkaloids. Definition by formula and definition by other statements could well be combined. For example:

    Dihydrocodeinone (of which the substance registered under the name of dicodide is a salt), formula C 18H 21O 3N.

    Morphine-N-oxide (registered trade name genomorphine), a pentavalent nitrogen morphine derivative, formula C 17H 19O 4N.

    There is a superfluous "o" in the spelling "dihydro-hydrooxycodeinone" (English text of the 1931 Convention). It should be simply "dihydrohydroxycodeinone". The French term is "dihydrooxycodéinone".

D. VARIOUS TERMS 1. "Raw materials"

The term "raw material" is properly used with reference to manufacturing; it signifies material available for manufacture into products to be sold by the manufacturer. On account of the importance of the 1931 Convention, which dealt solely with manufacturing, there is a strong tendency to equate the term "raw materials" to the primary natural products (opium, poppy "straw", coca leaves, and "Indian hemp"), not only when these are actually used as raw materials for manufacture, but in all cases. This extended usage can be justified to a certain extent by the fact that "raw" also means "crude", "in the natural state", etc., so that "raw materials" may be taken as equivalent to "crude natural products"; but this is not the accepted idiom.

The term "raw materials" should be used only with respect to actual manufacture, not spread over opium, poppy plant, coca leaves, cannabis drug, etc., when these are not used for manufacture. It is not very satisfactory as a synonym for the primary natural products.

2. Production

In its normal English sense "production" includes manufacture. Limitation of the meaning to production of "raw materials", excluding manufactured drugs, may prove unnecessary in a new single convention. In fact, in the 1931 Convention itself, "produced" is sometimes used in regard to manufactured drugs: article 1, 2, "considered as drugs even if produced by a synthetic process"; article 16, ( b), "the drugs produced".

3. Manufacture

This term includes the following terms also used in the Conventions: extraction, conversion, refining, and transformation into salts.

4. Conversion

This term denotes a manufacturing process, but a distinction is made from "manufacture" depending on the point of view, the same operation being "conversion'' of the drug used up and "manufacture" of the drug made from it. This distinction was introduced as a means of avoiding double accounting.

5. Extraction

The definition in the 1936 Convention is made somewhat unclear by the phrase "without involving any actual manufacture or conversion properly so called". Manufacture does include extraction. What seems to be meant is, "without involving any actual synthesis or chemical conversion". "From the substance or compound of which it forms part" is also rather obscure. Both "substance" and "compound" are words having a distinct sense in chemistry, but can hardly be so understood here. From the English text alone, "compound" would appear to have its pharmaceutical meaning in the phrase quoted. What seems to be meant is, "from the material or preparation of which it forms part". However, see 9 below.

6. Estimates

The definition depends on the provisions of the Convention, and in fact the definition in the 1931 Convention merely refers to articles 2 to 5.

7. Stocks

The definition required depends upon the terms of the Convention.

8. Derivatives

In spite of the decision of the Committee of Experts (see part I, D,8), the term "derivative" is often ambiguous. Sometimes it signifies chemical relationship and sometimes it means a product obtained from another regardless of how great the change may be or whether the original material was a simple chemical substance. Phrases like "derivatives of opium" signifying substances obtained (sometimes only indirectly and with modifications) from opium are not scientific but are often used. On account of its ambiguity this term should be avoided, at least wherever its meaning is not perfectly clear.

9. Compound

This term is ambiguous. As a noun, it has two quite different meanings, one pharmaceutical and one chemi- cal; hence on account of ambiguity it is better avoided. This is only too clearly shown by the fact that three different French terms have been used for it in the Conventions, and in two cases the meaning is still uncertain.

In the 1931 Convention the sub-divisions 1 ( a) and ( b) and also 2 ( c) (ii), of article 13, use the term "preparations" ("preparations") in both English and French, but the sub-division 2 ( b) uses "compounds" in English and "compositions" in French, with the same meaning - pharmaceutical preparations. This seems to have been merely a slip in drafting.26

In the 1936 Convention, article 1, 2, "compound" is used in defining "extraction" (see part I, D, 5 for this definition); here also the meaning in the English text seems to be "preparation" (see 5 above). But the French text in this case has "compose", which signifies a compound in the chemical sense. While clear in itself, this makes the definition of "extraction" less clear.

In the preamble of the 1948 Protocol the purpose is stated "to place these drugs, including their preparations and compounds containing these drugs, under control". Here the French text has "melanges" (mixtures), which indicates that "compounds containing these drugs" virtually repeats the thought of "their preparations".

Thus in all three cases "compound" may have its pharmaceutical meaning, but this is far from certain in two cases. It is probable that in general usage the chemical sense is now much more common.

"Compound" as a verb is understood in its pharmaceutical sense; hence the "compounding of preparations" may be referred to, as in articles 14 and 22 of the 1931 Convention.

10. Preparation

The confusion of multitudinous types of preparations is closely related to the question of definitions, but the definition of "preparation" is not the only one involved. In most cases the meaning of this term is fairly clear. With the exceptions noted in the previous discussion (part I, D, 9), the term is used with the meaning "preparation of the pharmaceutical type", if not actually "pharmaceutical preparation" or "preparation for medical purposes". In article 4 ( d) of the 1925 Convention the most restricted meaning must be the correct one: "preparations" must be "preparations for medical purposes", in order to exclude prepared opium, in spite of the fact that the phrase reads, "all preparations, officinal and non-officinal", without indicating any restrictions.27 "Prepared" (smoking) opium was not intended to be included here, but logically it ought to come under article 4 ( d) unless specifically exempted.

The following definition is suggested as the proper meaning to be used consistently:

"Preparation" means a mixture or solution containing a drug, made ready for use.

The word should be used in this sense only, unless it is necessary to establish some other meaning by a different formal definition.

Part III APPRAISAL OF STATUS AND CONTENT OF DEFINITIONS

A. DRUGS (OR SUBSTANCES) SUBJECT TO CONTROL

1. Methods of specifying the drugs concerned

Three methods may be suggested:

  1. Enumeration of the drugs already under the conventions; then use of these (or some of them) as exemplars, other drugs to be controlled in the future to be those "liable to similar abuse and productive of similar ill-effects". This is, generally speaking, what has formerly been done. It must of course be clear that "similar" is not to imply "similar in all respects" but "similar with respect to the problems of addiction". This being the case it would seem better to define in terms of addiction effects in the first place. However, the restrictive phrase will be further considered a little later (see 2 ( a) following).

  2. Enumeration of the drugs already under the conventions, then a definition or statement of the drugs that may be brought under control in the future, in terms of addiction effects. The drugs already under control would serve as examples of the addiction effects, but not in limiting others to "similar" or "the same" effects. The precise purport of the term "addiction" would be left to the experts of the World Health Organization, in accordance with the procedure which would be set out for bringing any drug under control, and of course with the drugs already controlled as examples.

See the Historical and Technical Study of the 1931 Convention, p. 176, footnote 1.

  1. The substances to be subject to control might first be referred to in the preamble in a general way, in terms of addiction effects. That is, the intention would be expressed of controlling the dangerous addiction-forming drugs, together with other substances which it is necessary to control in order to prevent the abuse of drugs. This would be a statement of purpose and an indication to the World Health Organization in regard to future decisions. The approach in the text of the convention would be pragmatic-the drugs within the scope of the new unified convention would be those already under the control of existing conventions plus those that may be added by the procedure for putting additional drugs under control (with the possibility also of dropping control if it becomes no longer necessary in a particular case). An article of the new convention could provide for an annex containing a list of the drugs already under control, and also provide that this list could be re-issued by the International Control Authority from time to time, with such additions and deletions as may be necessary. This would be preferable to enumerating the drugs at length in the convention. Other articles would establish the procedure for putting additional drugs under control, or freeing any from further control. Here it should not be necessary to define the drugs nor their effects, nor such terms as "addiction". It should be sufficient to provide for a decision by experts that it is necessary, desirable, and practicable to put a certain drug, or a certain chemical class of drugs, under control, in accordance with the purpose of the convention (or that it is no longer necessary, desirable, and practicable to keep the drug under control, in case of dropping control in a particular case). Some procedure should be established for the presentation of any possible objections to the particular extension of control under consideration. How a committee of experts should be constituted for such a decision, whether its decision should be binding unless specifically rejected by the Governments, and similar questions, are matters for further consideration. The pragmatic point here is that the procedure for putting additional drugs under control would replace the binding definition of what such drugs might be.

The phraseology comes from article 14 of the 1912 Convention.

2. Restrictive or defining phrases

  1. ''Liable to similar abuse and productive of similar ill-effects" (1925 Convention)

    The different addiction-forming drugs produce different effects, and in particular cannabis does not produce the same type of addiction as morphine or cocaine. Therefore, when the exemplars do not include any cannabis drug, it is rather doubtful whether the phrase quoted will properly cover new drugs having an effect like cannabis. This situation occurs in the 1948 Protocol, where the language is strengthened to "liable to the same kind of abuse and productive of the same kind of harmful effects as the drugs specified in article 1, paragraph 2" of the 1931 Convention. The drugs there specified do not include any cannabis, drug. On the other hand, paragraph 2 of article 1 of the 1948 Protocol apparently does not bind the World Health Organization to this restriction. On the contrary, the World Health Organization need only find that "the drug in question is capable of producing addiction or of conversion into a product capable of producing addiction".

    Of course, in "similar ill-effects" or "the same kind of harmful effects", there is no intention to say that the symptoms produced by various drugs are alike. The phrase must be understood in relation to addiction; but there may still be some uncertainty of meaning even when cannabis (or "Indian hemp") is one of the drugs stated as exemplars. The possibility should not be excluded that some new dangerous drug will become known or be created, which needs to be controlled but which can scarcely be said to have the same kind of effects as those now under control, and possibly not even "similar" or "like" ill-effects, unless the term used is rather liberally construed. It would seem to be much better to define the drugs to be covered in terms of addiction effects.

    Nevertheless, the formula of "similar ill-effects" does have one advantage. It provides an easy way out of the problem of "convertible" drugs or substances, inasmuch as any such substances to which control may be applied in the future will include, and at the same time be limited to, those presenting dangers similar to the dangers of codeine, thebaine, and ecgonine. It may be doubted if this is a very satisfactory way out of the difficulty, as the problem of "convertible" substances is not defined at all, but rather concealed by attributing abuse and ill-effects to such substances as thebaine and ecgonine. This consideration simply means that in changing to a formula based on addiction effects some provision will have to be made for control over a few closely related substances that are not in themselves directly addiction-forming.

  2. "A drug which is or may be used for medical or scientific purposes" (1948 Protocol)

    This phrase serves one good purpose; namely, it keeps the problem substantially within the ambit of the medical and pharmaceutical professions, and manufacture for medical purposes.

    A further reason for its insertion perhaps was that if a dangerous habit-forming narcotic has no other use than for addiction purposes, it should simply be outlawed, whereas the 1931 Convention provides for control and limitation of manufacture.

    However, the new single convention may well provide for outlawing dangerous drugs that are useless or nearly so, or that can be replaced by others not so dangerous. This was nearly decided on in the case of heroin in 1931. Moreover, the uselessness of a drug must not prevent a decision being taken in regard to it.

Four possibilities may be considered.

  1. Innumerable variations of synthetics are possible. Among those closely related to amidone, for example, may be some of no medical value but having strong addiction-forming properties. If no barriers are set up, unscrupulous manufacturers may turn out such products. It may be said that no Government will sanction the production of an obviously dangerous addiction-forming narcotic that has no legitimate use. Doubtless this is true, but medical use or uselessness should not be the only criterion for establishing international control. This should be based also, in fact mainly, on addiction effects. Moreover there are three other possibilities which are more nearly on the borderline.

  2. The possibility of the production of a medically useless drug or substance which some may consider extremely dangerous while others hold it to be harmless or nearly so. Such a drug might be consumed merely for pleasure and claimed to be completely or virtually harmless. Now that the possibility of control is extended over all sorts of synthetic products, and is no longer, limited to "products obtained from any of the phenanthrene alkaloids of opium or from the ecgonine alkaloids of coca leaves", it is scarcely possible any longer to prohibit "trade in or manufacture for trade" merely on the ground of no medical or scientific value, as in article 11 of the 1931 Convention. Dangerous addiction effects will have to be proved, but medical uselessness must not stop the investigation.

  3. A non-manufactured drug-a vegetable product -might be produced incidentally to some other reason for cultivating the plant, and might be useless medically as a drug, but addiction-producing. This is very nearly the case with cannabis, which may even be declared to be useless medically, as was proposed at the third session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs.

  4. A synthetic chemical product might be made for some wholly different purpose, not be offered as a drug at all and be useless and worse than useless medically, but be capable of causing addiction if consumed. Control might offer a difficult problem in such a case, but the possibility of a necessary control should not be excluded.

    All such problems have to be settled with regard to the danger of addiction, whether or not the drug has any medical use.

  1. "Any drug (or substance) capable of causing addiction or of conversion into a product capable of causing addiction"

    There is a tendency toward the adoption of this or similar language to define the drugs to be covered by the convention. Sometimes "capable of causing or sustaining addiction" is used. The whole phrase, particularly in the "conversion" part, may then be too inclusive. Even "capable of causing addiction" may be thought by some to be too broad. This depends largely upon just what is meant by addiction. It is suggested that this ought to be left to the experts of the World Health Organization, to be considered in direct connection with any particular drug submitted for the decision. However, as an indication to the World Health Organization, the language could be strengthened restrictively, if considered necessary, in either of two ways. Instead of simply "addiction", reference could be made to "dangerous addiction", or instead of "capable of causing addiction", the phrase might be, "liable to cause addiction".

    The second part of the definition, regarding conversion, needs more consideration. With the manifold possibilities of synthetics in mind, a conference may well hesitate to extend control to allsubstances (or to "anysubstance") merely "capable of conversion" into an addiction-forming or addiction-sustaining drug. In general, control over an otherwise harmless substance, in its licit use, should be asserted only at the moment it is purchased or brought into a factory for conversion into an addiction-forming drug; and even this-in such a case-would be only an accounting control. Special provisions covering illicit manufacture could be inserted in the chapter on illicit traffic.

    In the 1931 Conference there was much discussion as to how codeine, in particular, should be brought under control. It was admitted that control over codeine was necessary, but there was no agreement that it causes addiction. Convertibility into dangerous "habit-forming" drugs was made the criterion. Actually, five important factors were involved: (i) codeine is obtained, directly or indirectly, from opium, which itself requires full control; (ii) codeine is mostly made synthetically from morphine, which requires full control and accounting; (iii) codeine even has some addiction-forming properties, although these are admittedly feeble; (iv) codeine has definite addiction-sustaining liabilities; (v) codeine is convertible into addiction-forming drugs. Moreover, all the other "convertible" substances then considered were obtained from opium or coca leaves, so that there was then no real danger of spreading control too far. There is therefore scarcely any precedent here for establishing convertibility alone as justifying international control over every substance "capable of conversion" into an addiction-forming drug. On the other hand, several additional factors, equally with the possibility of conversion, may justify some degree of control. The real question in each case is this: is control necessaryfor a particular substance when it is not addiction-forming itself but related in some way to a dangerous addiction-forming drug ?

    It is certainly the drugs causing (or liable to cause) dangerous addiction, which primarily need to be controlled. Anything further, such as control over convertible substances, is secondary, and only for the purpose of enforcing the primary control.

    This being the case, it should be possible to define the scope of the convention (at least as regards the preamble) by referring primarily to the dangerous addiction-forming drugs. Other drugs and substances that may require some degree of control should not be "all" addiction-sustaining drugs, "any" substance capable of conversion, etc., but should be those other drugs and substances that it is necessaryto control in order to enforce control or prohibition of the dangerous addiction-forming drugs.

    The statement of the scope of the convention should therefore refer to the dangerous addiction-forming drugs, together with the other substances that it is necessary to control in order to prevent the abuse of drugs.

    As regards details, when the problem is wholly within the field of those who produce and dispense the legal narcotics-the pharmaceutical manufacturers and the pharmaceutical and medical professions-it is relatively simple. Even if some innocuous drug should be placed under control it could be handled along with the narcotics and the control would probably not be too onerous. Also the case of an addiction-forming drug converted to some non-narcotic substance (such as coca leaves made into flavouring extract) should not cause too much difficulty. It will probably be agreed that anyone desiring to manufacture from narcotic materials will have to observe controls until the materials are made harmless.

    It seems that the difficulties may arise not in regard to where control may end, but where it should begin.

    We might adopt the principle that when control has once been applied, it shall continue over substances obtained from that material until it is clearly no longer necessary.

    With regard to asserting control, we might accept this principle:

    Full control shall be applied only when the fundamental structure of an addiction-forming drug is present or has been created.

    In the case of synthetics this would mean that control -beyond a mere accounting of materials-will only apply when the structure of the compound has been built up to the point where chemical experts can say that the fundamental structure of the addiction-forming drug is present. If any further provisions are necessary to close possible leaks and gaps they could be inserted in the chapter on illicit traffic.

B. PRIMARY NATURAL PRODUCTS ("RAW MATERIALS")

Some of the definitions in the conventions merely describe the commercial product, without considering whether or not an illicit product would necessarily correspond to the definition. Others are quite broad. The extreme example of the first kind is the definition of "Indian hemp", which only described the pharmacopoeial drug. On the other hand the definition of the coca leaf included not only the two known species yielding the leaves of commerce, but also "the leaf of other species of this genus from which it may be possible to extract cocaine, either directly or by chemical transformation". Considering that definitions must sometimes be used for enforcement purposes, it would seem that in general they should be broad, applicable either to legitimate commercial products or to others. This breadth should be obtained by coming directly to the point, not by attempting exhaustive specifications. On this basis most of the existing definitions are either too limited or too prolix, or both. Revision of the existing text has already been considered; now it is necessary to consider what definitions are really necessary, and to reconsider the text on a fundamental level.

1. Opium

  1. What opium definitions are necessary?

    The conventions define raw opium, medicinal opium, and prepared opium. In addition, the questionnaires have distinguished between untreated raw opium and standardized raw opium, and the term "untreated" suggests that there may be other kinds of treated opium, besides standardized, medicinal, and prepared. Too many kinds of opium have been distinguished. Actually what needs to be controlled is simply opium.

    Prepared opium was defined in order to delimit its legaluse. If the principle is now accepted that the use of opium for addiction purposes shall be outlawed, it is only necessary to prohibit the preparation of opium for such purposes, or for any other than medical and scientific purposes. It is not necessary to write a descriptive definition of opium prepared for smoking. In fact any such definition can only leave loopholes, by failing to cover all possibilities of opium prepared in some other way but still used for smoking or some other addiction purpose.

    The distinction between raw opium and medicinal opium is artificial. It is perhaps necessary for statistical accounting, but may not have to be embodied in the new single convention. There is nothing in their nature to prevent the same opium being both raw opium and medicinal opium. In fact, the present distinction in the Conventions apparently exists chiefly to clear the way for the legal use of raw opium to make prepared opium for smoking purposes. Thus, by article 5 of the 1925 Convention the Contracting Parties agreed to "enact effective laws or regulations to limit exclusively to medical and scientific purposes the manufacture, import, sale, distribution, export and use of the substances to which this Chapter applies." This provision takes in "medicinal opium" but not "raw opium".

    If the principle is accepted that the use of opium shall be confined to medical and scientific purposes, then there is no longer the same necessity to distinguish between raw opium and medicinal opium. Control can be applied simply to opium.

    Forms and questionnaires can, of course, continue to make distinctions between untreated raw opium, standardized opium, medicinal opium, etc. However, once the principle of limitation to medical and scientific needs (or purposes) is accepted-if it is accepted-the need for defining all these varieties in the Convention disappears. It is only necessary to define "opium" itself, if any definition at all is needed.

    Without defining different kinds of opium, it may be advisable to provide that the only opium that can be exported legitimately, aside from samples for scientific purposes, shall be the opium standardized for commercial purposes by the national monopolies of the exporting countries. Such a provision includes its own definition of "standardized opium" to the full extent necessary.

  2. Simplified and general definition of opium

    If a definition of opium is included at all it should be very simple, e.g.,opium is the coagulated juice of the plant Papaver somniferum .L.

    It is entirely unnecessary to insert further descriptive words or.phrases, as for example words specifying that the juice is obtained from the capsules, unless a closer description of the commercial product is really needed.

    There is , however, the question whether a true opium (containing morphine) might be obtained from any other species of poppy than Papaver somniferum. This question was examined in a monograph published by the United States Treasury Department, Bureau of Narcotics: "The Opium Poppy and Other Poppies" (1944). Morphine has never been found in any other plant than Papaver somniferum, but many poppies have never been examined chemically. There is a fair probability that one other species produces morphine-namely Papaver setigerum, closest relative of Papaver somniferum-but actual analyses of it are lacking. There are also hybrids of Papaver somniferum with other species, some bearing little external resemblance to Papaver.somniferum.These have been hybridized for floral purposes, and nothing is known about the inheritance of the morphine-producing characteristics.

    To cover all possibilities it would therefore be necessary to. define opium in this manner:

    Opium is the coagulated juice of morphine-forming poppies.

    This perhaps has the further merit of relating the definition for opium to the chemical examination.

    On the other hand, it may be better to limit the definition to the present situation, in which case any new kind of "opium" can still be brought under control, under some other name and definition, in case it ever requires control. This will certainly be the best procedure so far as concerns the possibility of ever obtaining commercially any "phenanthrene alkaloid of opium", other than morphine, from some species of plant other than Papaver somniferum. Probably it is true even for the chance that some other poppy may sometime be found to have a morphine-containing juice. There is a certain advantage in including morphine in the definition, and the question can be considered. However, opium, no less than morphine, is a definite, well-known substance. If a definition of it is required at all, it is only for the purpose of being quite specific. A definition including more than the normal meaning might arouse some doubt as to exactly what "opium" might mean, just contrary to the ostensible purpose of giving a definition. It is probably best, therefore, that opium be defined with reference only to Papaver somniferum.

2. Poppy plant material or poppy capsules

The discussion above in regard to the source of opium applies also to poppy plant material. It is possible that some other species of poppies contain morphine, but in the existing situation reference need be made only to Papaver somniferum.

It is recommended that use of the term "opium poppy" be avoided. The reason is the possible ambiguity between "poppy capable of producing opium" and "poppy grown for the production of opium". The absence of cultivation of the "opium poppy" is sometimes reported when in fact Papaver somniferum is cultivated, but only for its edible and oil-bearing seeds

There may be a question whether dried poppy capsules for drug purposes come under the existing conventions. Considering the slight difference between "medicinal opium" as a manufactured drug (1925 Convention) and raw opium, it may be argued that poppy capsules come, or ought to come, under the "preparations containing more than 0.2 per cent of morphine" of chapter III of the 1925 Convention, whenever they have more than this content and are "prepared" for drug use. In fact, that dried poppy capsules should be regarded as coming under the 1925 and 1931 Conventions was apparently the view taken in the Advisory Committee on Traffic in Opium and Other Dangerous Drugs of the League of Nations, in 1934.28 However, this will hardly fit the usual meaning of "preparation", and in any case the matter needs clarification when a new Convention is drafted. Formerly the poppy capsules were believed to contain only very minute amounts of morphine, but since the inauguration of the "Kabay process"29 numerous analyses and manufacturing results have shown that the dry capsules generally contain more than 0.2 per cent morphine, even up to 1 per cent or so. Undoubtedly they should be brought under control when used as a drug or for the manufacture of drugs, but if possible by provisions that do not interfere with poppyseed production.

Minutes of the Advisory Committee, 19th session, 1934, p. 50. (Document C.33.M.14.1935.XI)

A broad definition of poppy capsules for drug purposes, or of "poppy plant material" subject to control, may necessitate the statement that the growling plant, when cultivated exclusively for other than drug purposes, is not included in the definition, and may be controlled or not at the discretion of the Government concerned·

3. Coca leaves

"Coca leaf" (the singular form is used in the conventions) is not such a definite, easily recognizable substance as opium. The existing definition names two species and also includes "the leaf of other species of this genus from which it may be found possible to extract cocaine, either directly or by chemical transformation''. There has been some argument about the botanical species involved in producing the coca leaves of commerce, so it was probably for this reason that the general phrase was added. It is not absolutely certain that the two named species take in all the leaves now used for manufacturing and for chewing, although this is the opinion of the best authorities. It may therefore be best to continue to use this same sort of definition The following is suggested:

Coca leaves are the leaves of Erythroxylum species, which contain or yield cocaine either directly or by conversion of ecgonine; the species now used commercially are recognized as Erythroxylum coca Lamarck and Erythroxylum novogranatense (Morris) Hieronymus.

As a matter of fact, the commercial meaning of coca leaves is not based on the botanical identification, but on the fact that they yield cocaine, either directly or by hydrolysis of the alkaloids to ecgonine and its conversion to cocaine. The leaves are a well-known material of commerce and probably no definition is really necessary. A definition is not necessary if it is understood that the practical test for identifying leaves as coca leaves is the fact of their containing or yielding cocaine.

4. Cannabis

The question of the text of a definition has already been discussed at length (part II, B, 4). The question

Commercial extraction of morphine from poppy plant material was first developed by a Hungarian scientist, Janos de Kabay. An account including the patent specification, was published soon after the commercial success was established, in League of Nations document C.256.M.105.1934.XI, report to the Council on the work of the 18th session of the Opium Advisory Committee, annex 3.

may be raised whether any definition is necessary when the scientific term "cannabis" is used. Cannabis sativa is a well-known botanical species and "cannabis drug" is self-explanatory; but experience has shown that the term "Indian hemp", even though defined, is confusing.

The hemp plant, Cannabis sativa, is grown far more widely for its fibres, and even for its oil-bearing seeds, than for the narcotic resin. It is so important industrially that, even more than in the case of the poppy plant, if an extremely broad definition is adopted for the material to be controlled, it may be necessary to add that the growing plant, when cultivated exclusively for other than drug purposes, is not included in the definition, and its control is a matter for the discretion of each Government individually.

C. MANUFACTURED DRUGS

1. Definitions of the manufactured drugs

The definitions of the manufactured drugs in the 1931 Convention should not be regarded as fully defining them, even though the elemental chemical formulas are given. The elemental formulas alone are quite inadequate to full definition. This is illustrated by the fact that dihydrocodeinone and codeine have exactly the same formula, C 18H 21O 3N. In fact numerous entirely different compounds might be found having exactly the same elemental formulas as some of the drugs defined in this way in article 1, paragraph 3, of the 1931 Convention.

As has been previously pointed out (part I, C, 5) additional information was in fact given in the Convention. Even then the information is rather scanty to be regarded as full definition. The question may be asked whether it has been adequate to its purpose.

The information has been adequate to the purposes of the Convention because in the main no real definitions were required, merely an enumeration of the drugs to be covered. There is no doubt or dispute about the meaning .of "morphine", "codeine", "thebaine", and .most of the others, as chemical substances. They really only need a little explanation, in regard to commercial terms or otherwise, but this seldom amounts to a real definition. What is needed is merely a list or enumeration of the drugs covered rather than a set of definitions properly speaking. Such a list should include the minimum of information necessary to be quite specific, but it is not necessary to consider whether each drug is completely and uniquely defined, as long as it is perfectly clear what substance is meant. The elemental formulas can be combined with other information in the manner shown in part II, C, 5.

The synthetic equivalents of natural alkaloids will, of course, be included.

2. The term "manufactured drugs"

The existing Conventions make a basic distinction between manufactured drugs and "raw materials".

There is a genuine difference between primary natural products and manufactured drugs, and the division has been kept for convenience in discussing the definitions. However, essentially the same control should apply to all kinds of socially dangerous addiction- forming drugs, whether they are natural products hitherto regarded chiefly as "raw materials", manufactured drugs derived from natural products, or synthetics.

D. VARIOUS TERMS

If the principle is accepted, that production of the dangerous addiction-forming substances for drug use should be limited to medical and scientific purposes, many of the difficulties with definitions vanish at once. Definitions of different kinds of opium will not be necessary, since it is simply "opium" that needs to be limited. The term "raw materials" will not be needed for a particular class of narcotics distinguished from manufactured drugs. If used at all, the term will simply indicate the materials that the factories take in. The term "production" will include "manufacture". "Manufacture", if used at all, will not require so much splitting up into extraction, conversion, refining, and transformation. Some other difficulties will similarly almost solve themselves, if we do not needlessly repeat involved definitions of the past, but consider only what is necessary under the general principles that should be established by the new convention.

1. "Raw materials"

Unnecessary as a synonym for the crude natural products, and misleading when used in that sense, this term should be used only with direct reference to manufacture. Even then, its present use is unfortunate in separating some narcotics as mere "raw materials" from the others which are manufactured drugs. Opium should be treated as a narcotic drug, not as a mere "raw material". A unitary convention should concern itself equally with all addiction-forming drugs, without making an artificial distinction, as at present, between manufactured narcotics and "raw materials" which are also narcotic drugs.

2. Production

In considering limitation of production it is necessary to note that the formula of "production only for medical and scientific needs" may be unduly restrictive. For example, in the case of coca leaves, even if chewing should be determined to be quite harmful and ruled out (in principle at least) as constituting dangerous addiction, we shall still have to retain production of the leaves for flavouring extract as well as for medical and scientific purposes. In the case of new synthetics it is quite conceivable that an addiction-forming drug may also have chemical or industrial uses that are not, strictly speaking, either medical or scientific. If it is made entirely plain that production for addiction uses is illegitimate, then the word "legitimate", used in the 1912 Convention (article 9) might perhaps be restored to use. As an alternative, the formula can perhaps be amended as follows:

"Production for drug use of any substance under the control of the convention shall be only for medical and scientific purposes."

"Production" of raw opium, as interpreted in practice, has had two different meanings. Some countries and some representatives to the Commission on Narcotic Drugs understand the opium production of a country to be its whole production of opium, licit or illicit, whether produced under control or not, and whether remaining under control, or brought under control, or not. But a number of other countries - the majority, in fact, of the producing countries - interpret opium production, at least statistically, as meaning only the opium purchased, or collected under full control of the governmental monopoly, or otherwise officially recognized as "produced". Any other production, even when legal, or in other cases tolerated, is not considered. Likewise, the possibility of diversion is left unconsidered - the possibility that the peasant cultivators will not turn over all the opium they collect to the governmental monopoly but will sell some of it to illicit’ traffickers and smugglers.

It must be admitted that it will often be difficult for a country to estimate its total production with any great accuracy, especially if there is some cultivation that is wholly illicit. Still, it seems that the term production ought to mean this. Purchases or collections from the peasants by the agents of the governmental monopoly ought to be called purchases or collections of opium produced, and not be called "production". It would be well if the Annual Reports could include estimates by the agricultural authorities of the possible total production of raw opium. For the purposes of statistical control the quantities brought under strict governmental control would, of course, be reported. It may be that some countries would be reluctant to disclose estimates of total production, but the approach would be more realistic than at present.

Production of a primary natural narcotic or raw material should mean the total actually produced, whether legal production and under control or not; but it should not include a merely potential production from the plants cultivated for other purposes or growing wild - such as poppy plant material not collected for extraction or drug use, coca leaves never gathered, or cannabis drug not harvested from the hemp plants.

3. Manufacture

If a new convention is not limited to manufacture of drugs but concerns the production - in the broadest sense - of addiction-forming drugs by any means, then there is comparatively little use for this term, and that only in its obvious meaning.

4. Conversion

Probably no definition is necessary. The use of the word has been, after all, in an obvious sense. Conversion is simply an aspect of manufacture, as manufacture is an aspect of production. Something may be said, however, in regard to the possibility of so defining "convertible" as to preserve the idea of including under control all substances "convertible" into addiction-forming drugs (discussed above, part III, A, 2, ( c)).

In cases of conversion of morphine, or some other phenanthrene alkaloid of opium, the greater part of the molecule remains unaffected. For example, in the conversion of morphine into codeine, the morphine molecule of molecular weight 285 loses only a weight of 1 and then gains a weight of 15, a great block of the molecule, of molecular weight 284, remaining unaffected. This is quantitatively different from the "conversion" of substances such as propylene oxide, dimethylamine, and benzaldehyde into amidone. In this latter case, each of the other three substances contributes only a particular part of the amidone molecule, and the addiction-forming properties cannot be said to be inherent in any one of them but only in the complex that is built up. There might seem to be the ground of distinction here Ac-tually we have already had something of the kind in the case of cocaine. Here the ecgonine part instead of constituting nearly the whole of the cocaine molecule forms only about two-thirds of it(molecular weight 203 as compared with 303 for cocaine). Moreover the ecgonine itself is non-habit-forming, so that the methyl and benzoyl parts of the molecule - or some equivalent radicals - are equally necessary to the formation of an addic-tion-forming drug. Conventionally we think of the ecgo-nine as convertible into cocaine but actually it is methyl alcohol, benzoic acid, and ecgonine, the three together, that are convertible into cocaine. Ecgonine is obtained from coca leaves and in fact from cocaine and similar alkaloids already existent in the leaves, besides constituting two-thirds of the cocaine molecule, so there are compelling reasons for controlling it. However, it is difficult to draw a dividing line based on the single criterion of mere "convertibility". The conclusion, as in the preceding discussion (part III, A, 2, ( c)) is that, in the case of synthetics, control should not be asserted until at least the main fundamental structure of an addiction-forming drug has been created; but thereafter control should be continued until the drug has been legitimately consumed or its structure rendered completely harmless by further processes.

5. Extraction

Since the word has been used in an obvious sense, even though the existing definition is far from perfect, there does not seem to be an established need for any definition at all.

6. Estimates

The simplest and perhaps an effective way of limiting the production of raw opium, poppy chaff for alkaloids, etc., to medical and scientific needs would seem to be to include these substances in the estimate system.

7. Derivative

If this term is avoided except where its meaning is perfectly clear (as suggested, part II, D, 8), its definition can hardly be necessary. It should be used only in a restricted scientific meaning, as in the 1931 Convention (quoted in part I, D, 8). The meaning of the word may be clear enough in the case of "all derivatives of opium", and similar phrases, but the nature of the substances included under such a designation is not clear; consequently such uses of the term should be avoided.

8. Compound

Even in the existing conventions it is difficult to be entirely sure whether the chemical or the pharmaceutical meaning is intended. Instead of defining the word, it will be better not to use it as an unmodified noun. In the pharmaceutical sense "preparation" will serve better. If the chemical meaning of the noun should be needed, it will be best to say "chemical compound".

9. Preparation

The 1931 Convention defined some preparations as "drugs" while using the term in most cases for preparations made from "the drugs". This alone is responsible for creating at least four separate classes of preparations made "directly"from opium and coca leaves - two defined as : "drugs" and two excluded from the 1931 Con-vention - and separating them from the various kinds of preparations made from "the drugs", of which there were also several different kinds. There is no reason why under the new single convention there should be more than two kinds of preparations - those subject to further control, and those exempt from further control when once made.

The division of "the drugs" of the 1931 Convention into groups I and II was responsible for the creation of certain different classes of preparations. As a matter of fact, the regime for drugs of group I in a great many respects is the same as for drugs of group II, so far as the drugs themselves are concerned. The principal exceptions are that statistics of consumption do not have to be reported for drugs of group II, and that trade statistics are furnished annually and not quarterly as in the case of drugs in group I. Otherwise, the chief difference is in the treatment of their preparations: preparations of group I drugs are normally subject to further control while those of group II drugs are not. It might therefore be possible to abandon the division of the drugs under control into groups I and II, and merely divide the preparations into the exempt and the non exempt.

Exemptions may probably be of two kinds:

  1. Exemption for preparations made up by retail pharmacists in response to doctors’ prescriptions;

  2. Exemption for certain kinds of preparations considered to be safe from addiction-abuse. The compounding of such preparations, under control, can be permitted to wholesale drug-manufacturers, and such preparations then be released from further control.

In the most general control provisions, preparations may be treated either as included in the term "drugs", or as being made from the drugs already accounted for in the limitation plan. The former appears to be the usage in the 1948 Protocol; the latter, with a number of exceptions, was the general idea in the Limitation Convention (1931 Convention). These two plans are not necessarily as far apart as they may seem. They may be presented as follows:

Alternative (A)

The "drugs" or "substances" of the convention shall in principle include their preparations.

  1. The list of substances under control will include as a final item "All preparations of these substances except those specifically exempted".

  2. In general clauses it will only be necessary to refer to "the substances under control" or "the substances of article . . .". This will be understood to include preparations.

  3. "Preparations" will be mentioned for the specific exemptions.

Alternative (B)

The term "drugs" or "substances" of the convention shall not include their preparations.

  1. The list of substances under control will not include any preparations.

  2. In general control clauses it will be necessary to refer to "the substances under control and their non-exempt preparations", or "the substances of article... and their non-exempt preparations", or the like.

  3. A system of dividing preparations into the exempt and the non-exempt will be required.

In either case further provisions may be necessary. The important thing is to carry out one plan or the other consistently. This is chiefly a matter of proper drafting.

Part IV - PROPOSALS A. SUBSTANCES TO BE CONTROLLED

In defining the drugs to be controlled, the following points are suggested:

  1. The purpose is to control (and if necessary, prohibit) drugs liable to cause socially dangerous addiction, or narcomania (see part III, A, 2, ( c); and part II, A, 6 and 7). These drugs may be called, for short, "addiction-forming drugs", or "narcotics", or "stupefacients" (see part II, A).

  2. Control must encompass some substances not in themselves addiction-forming; such substances should be placed under control only as this is necessary to enforce control of the addiction-forming drugs. The general formula of controlling "anysubstance capable of conversion into a drug capable of causing addiction" should be abandoned. This formula is too broad in one way, too narrow in another, since there are other factors to be considered besides convertibility (see especially part III, A, 2, ( c)).

  3. The unified convention will be greatly' simplified if the text does not have to be burdened with the detailedenumeration and definitions of all the drugs to be covered.The following provisions are suggested: (1) a general statement concerning the substances to be controlled, e.g.,that they shall be 'addiction-forming drugs,including,if it is necessary to specify this, those habit-forming drugs liable to create intense craving or psychic addiction, the abuse of which is harmful and socially dangerous; (2) an article taking under control all the drugs at the time under the present conventions, providing for a list of these drugs in an annex, and also providing that this list may be reissued from time to time by the International Control Authority, with any necessary additions or deletions; (3) an article, or articles, stating the procedure for extending control (see part III, A, 1).

  4. Definition of drugs to be covered should be related to addiction liabilities. The formula "liable to similar abuse and productive of similar ill-effects" requires exemplars and is open to the objection that the addiction-effects of new drugs may not be truly "similar" to those of old ones (much less "the same kind" as in the 1948 Protocol). Restriction to "a drug which is or may be used for medical or scientific purposes" should not be used in the unified convention because the useless- ness of a drug should not operate against international control and there are various borderline possibilities. The danger of addiction as a social menace should be the primary consideration leading to control (see part III, A, 2 ( a) and ( b)). The production of "addiction-forming drugs" which are medically and otherwise useless should be prohibited.

  1. The procedure for extending control should be regarded as the essential part of the definition of additional substances that may be brought under the convention. It should be carefully safeguarded to allay any apprehension that control might be spread too far. Particularly in the case of substances not addiction-forming in themselves, provision should be made for considering any objections to the control before it is established (see part III, A, 1, ( c).

  2. Control (beyond merely accounting for materials) should be asserted only when the fundamental structure of a recognized addiction-forming drug is present However, special provisions to broaden this base can be included in the chapter on illicit traffic, if necessary. Control once established should continue until the substance concerned is consumed legitimately as a narcotic, or otherwise rendered harmless and accounted for (see part III, A, 2 ( c) and part III, D, 4).

B. Primary Natural Products 1. Opium

If the principle is accepted that production of opium be limited to medical and scientific purposes and its use for other purposes be outlawed, there is no need for a definition of "prepared opium", and little if any necessity for attempting a distinction between "raw opium" and "medicinal opium". "Prepared opium" can be outlawed by exclusion - or, if necessary, by specifically stating that opium prepared for smoking shall be prohibited - but not by attempting to frame a definition for it.

The substance that needs to be controlled is opium. This substance is perfectly well known and there is no dispute about its identity, therefore probably no definition is needed for the convention. If a definition of opium is used it should be very simple, e.g., opium is the coagulated juice of the plant Papaver somniferum. L.

(See chiefly part III, B, 1. For definitions of "raw opium" and "medicinal Opium", if needed, see part II, B, 1.)

2. Poppy plant material

The terms "poppy plant material" and "poppy capsules" are recommended. These need only the explanation that "poppy" refers to Papaver somniferum. It is recommended that the terms "poppy straw" and "opium poppy" be avoided, the former because it is misunderstood as referring to the stems, and the latter because of ambiguity between "poppy capable of producing opium" and "poppy grown for the production of opium" (see part II, B, 2, and part III, B, 2).

3.·Coca Leaves

The following definition is suggested: coca leaves are the leaves of Erythroxylum species, which contain or yield cocaine either directly or by conversion of ecgonine; the species now used commercially are recognized as Erythroxylum coca Lamarck and Erythroxylum novogranatense (Morris) Hieronymus

Probably no definition is really necessary as it is quite well understood what is meant by coca leaves, and that in case of any doubt, the fact of containing or yielding cocaine is the practical test (see part III, B, 3).

4. Cannabis

The following is proposed:

Cannabis sativa shall be the term used for the hemp plant, Cannabis sativa Linnaeus, and shall include its Variety indica sometimes known as Cannabis indica Lamarck. "Cannabis drug" shall be the term used for any addiction-forming drug obtained therefrom. (A definition in terms of the resin is also given in part II, B, 4.)

A definition is·really not necessary, as Cannabis sativa is a scientific botanical term and "cannabis drug" is self-explanatory (see part III, B, 4).

5. Reservation

So far as cultivation is concerned it should be remembered that the plants may be cultivated for other than drug purposes, particularly Papaver somniferum and Cannabis sativa. If extremely broad definitions are adopted for the materials to be controlled,it may be necessary to add that the growing plants when cultivated exclusively for other than drug purposes, are not included in the definition,and may be controlled or not at the discretion of the Government concerned (see part III, B, 2 and 4).

C. MANUFACTURED DRUGS

There is no real doubt or dispute about the identity of "morphine", "codeine", "thebaine", etc. All that is needed is an enumeration of the drugs to be controlled, with a minimum of definition (see part IV, A, 3; part III, A, 1, ( c); part III, C, 1, and part II, C).

Essentially the same kind of control should apply to all kinds of socially dangerous addiction-forming drugs, whether they are manufactured drugs or the harvested natural products hitherto regarded chiefly as "raw materials" (see part III, C, 2).

D. VARIOUS TERMS 1. "Raw materials"

Properly the term signifies materials taken into factories for processing or the manufacture of products. There is a tendency to equate the term to the primary natural products, not only when these are used as raw materials for manufacture, but in all cases. It will be better to use the term only in its idiomatic sense, with reference to manufacturing. In its normal meaning, it does not need a formal definition. It should not be used to imply a distinction between manufactured drugs and narcotic "raw materials" in regard to their treatment as narcotics (see part II, D, 1, and part III, D, 1).

2. Production

The term has been limited, in some cases, to production of "raw materials" as distinguished from the manufacture of drugs. In its normal English sense "production" includes manufacture. The unitary convention should place all production of narcotics, whether crude natural drugs or manufactured drugs, on the same level, in principle (see part II, D, 2, and Part III, D, 2). In order that the purpose of the convention may be accomplished, the meaning of production of the primary natural products should include all actual production and not merely the legal or the purchased production (see part II, D, 2).

3. Manufacture

If a new convention is not limited to the manufacturing, but concerns the production (in the broadest sense) of "addiction-forming drugs" by any means, then there is little use, if any, for this term. In any case it should not require a formal definition (see part II, D, 3, and part III, D, 3).

4. Conversion

It may be questioned whether the term is necessary for the new unified convention, as conversion is included in manufacture. In any case a formal definition scarcely seems necessary, as the meaning is normal. It could still be used statistically to avoid double accounting (see part II, D, 4, and part III, D, 4).

5. Extraction

The definition given in the 1936 Convention is subject to criticism, but the word has been used in an obvious sense. There does not seem to be an established need for a formal definition (see part II, D, 5, and part III, D, 5).

6. Estimates

The natural products should be included in the estimates. The definition (whether given formally or not) depends on the provisions of the convention (see part II, D, 6, and part III, D, 6).

7. Stocks

For such kinds of stocks as may be authorized the meaning depends on the provisions of the convention (see part II, D, 7).

8. Derivative

This term is likely to be ambiguous and on this account should be avoided. It should be used, if at all, only in the scientific sense where the meaning is obvious (see part II, D, 8, and part III, D, 7).

9. Compound

This term is too ambiguous as an unmodified noun. "Preparation" can replace it in the pharmaceutical sense; "chemical compound" in the chemical sense (see part I, D, 9, part II, D, 9, and part III, D, 8).

10. Preparation

The term should be restricted to its ordinary pharmaceutical sense, not including such "preparations" as pantopon and charas. A multiplicity of preparations are distinguished now; there should be no need for more than two: those subject to further control and those exempt from further control when once made. The question should be considered whether to include "preparations"' within the scope of term "drugs" or "substances" under control (except when specifically exempted), or to consider them only as containing drugs. However, this last point is chiefly a matter of drafting, not affecting the basic considerations (see part I, D, 10, part II, D, 10, and part III, D, 9).