[ Skip to main content ]

The third edition of our annual report on how New Zealand is dealing with alcohol and other drugs was published in December 2020.

As well as helping us understand where we should be focusing our attention, State of the Nation is intended to provide a backdrop against which we can assess the impact of any policy changes. 

The 2020 report uses information compiled from publicly available statistics and OIA requests. It's designed to help us take stock and provide a benchmark to assess whether recent reforms are delivering on their promises.

Rates of harmful alcohol use remain of concern in New Zealand, and cannabis use is rising - but tobacco use is going down. Methamphetamine use remained relatively steady across the population as a whole last year, though huge increases in border seizures in 2019 were cause for concern. It's also noteworthy that waste-water testing showed a substantial increase in the quantity of MDMA consumed in New Zealand during 2019.

Download State of the Nation 2020 here:

State of the Nation 2020 ( PDF 1.8mb )


Key facts from State of the Nation 2020

This is our third State of the Nation report. You can download the previous editions here:


State of the Nation 2018 ( PDF 5.4mb )

Related See more

Opinion: What we know about drugs in NZ in 2020

Kali Mercier sets out what we know in 2020, and outlines how the need to collect accurate information has never been greater.

MoS nov 2019 thumbnail tricia asha

Balancing justice's racist scales

With the 2020 cannabis referendum fast approaching, New Zealanders have a unique opportunity to let the government know what they want from ...

Recommendations for cannabis Bill released today

Today at Parliament the NZ Drug Foundation released Taking control of cannabis: A model for responsible regulation, a new report that shows ...

MoS march 2019 thumbnail health not handcuffs

Introducing He Korowai Aroha, Health Not Handcuffs

A new movement called Health Not Handcuffs has been launched ahead of the cannabis referendum, calling for drug laws that give people a han...

DYK stock guys 260x260px

Did You Know

Conversation tools for parents, caregivers and youth workers to help your young person make safer decisions about drugs

Learn more

social graphic subscribe

Subscribe to email updates

Get regular news, analysis and commentary on drug issues in New Zealand. Free.

Sign up now!

Back to top