HOUSTON, Texas -- Looks like the U.S.- Mexico border is "breaking bad." New figures show that U.S. Border Patrol seized 14,372 pounds of methamphetamine last year. That number accounts for 63 percent of the total seizures in all of America.
DEA special agent Wendell Campbell says, "Methamphetamine has become our number one drug threat coming across the southwest border, specifically Houston and other major cities.
Once primarily manufactured in the U.S., law enforcement now estimates 90% of meth consumed in the U.S. is actually produced south of the border.
So why the change?
Drug counselor Thomas Smith says, "One of the reasons that there is more meth coming into the country is here in the United States, individuals have to provide identification to prove who they are in order to get the substances that are used to make meth."
And even though there's been a steep drop in meth lab discoveries here in the U.S., deaths due to use of the drug have continued to grow.
With a small overhead, Mexican cartels are able to produce the drug much cheaper than drugs like cocaine, and in the process they're getting more inventive in their trafficking methods.
Campbell says, "It's an extremely addictive drug. More addictive than cocaine in many cases... but it is a stimulant that affects the central nervous system."
One thing is clear about the epidemic, the production of meth and the desire to consume it - is seemingly unstoppable.