Social control and as supply-side harm reduction strategies. The case of an indigenous community in Peru

Jaqueline Garcia-Yi


Traditional coca uses have taken place in Peru and Bolivia from three thousand years. International organizations have urged the implementation of “zero-coca” growing policies in those countries, although without tangible results. Supply-side harm reduction strategies are currently being implemented in Bolivia, which rely on social control to limit, although not totally abolish coca growing. In this article, the different motivations for traditional coca growing are extensively reviewed, and the data from a survey conducted with 496 farmers in an indigenous community is examined, in order to provide a comprehensive overview of the coca-growing problem and to evaluate if social control could potentially influence the scale of coca growing in Peru. The results suggest that social control variables, such as attachment, involvement, and beliefs, seem to limit coca-growing areas. Those factors have been largely overlooked and may offer an opportunity to reduce coca areas if explicitly considered in anti-drug policy design.

García-Yi, J. (2014). Social control and as supply-side harm reduction strategies. The case of an indigenous community in Peru. Iberoamerican Journal of Development Studies, 3 (1): 58-82


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