Though it might be a pervasive problem here, the steroid-counterfeiting phenomenon is not isolated to the United States. This issue is global. We can see tangible evidence of this in a growing number of reports from other countries. As you probably know, law enforcement agencies often send seized drugs out to the lab for analysis. In some cases, they release large volumes of this data to the public. This can provide us an excellent vantage point to assess black market quality. In this case, we’ve got a really compelling report on Brazil (1). Once known to be a “steroid haven”, the black market in this country appears to be just as much of a mess as the U.S. these days! Take a look.
A High Percentage of Fakes
Concerning the data used in this report, police in Brazil tested 2,818 seized anabolic products between the years 2006 and 2011. The testing methods used were qualitative. This is very similar to the type of examination (How it works) we make with ROIDTEST. The testing checks to see if the listed drug is actually present. In other words, the steroid is “qualified” not “quantified”. Even with qualitative testing, which can underestimate the total number of fakes, as 55% of tested products came back as counterfeit on a given year! Over the last two years of the examination, this number remained a steady 40%. FAKE.
Some Drugs Worse Than Others
This report provided us ample detail data beyond just the percentage of fake steroids. In particular, it broke down the analyzed drugs by name. We were able to see which drugs were most commonly fake, and which were more secure. As we noticed, the percentage of counterfeits varied a great deal between the drugs. They went to extremes, really. For some, nearly everything sent to the lab was real. For others, most of it was crap. I’ve included a chart from the report for your review, along with a quick breakdown of the most and least secure steroids in the Brazilian market, according to the report.
Most Counterfeited AAS (by %)
Least Faked AAS (by %)
My, have times changed. Not all that long ago, you could still find North American and European athletes speaking longingly about the steroid market in Brazil. Not only were the drugs easier to get here, but also the supply was much more diverse. Drug companies continued to produce certain drugs here that were scarce elsewhere… appeared more open to supporting the obscure needs of international bodybuilders. While that might still be the case, the market also appears to have been infiltrated by counterfeiters. With data as we’ve seen here, it is hard to consider this supply all that much more secure than it is here. Now more than ever, all consumers need to stay education and on point about product legitimacy and quality. Of course, we’ll continue to do our best to help out here, be it with information or support.
Be careful, be safe.
(1) D.B. da Justa Neves et al. / Forensic Science International 228 (2013) e81–e83
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