What's in Toronto's drug supply?

Toronto’s drug checking service offers people who use drugs timely and detailed information on the contents of their drugs, helping them to make more informed decisions.

This service also shares information on Toronto’s unregulated drug supply with harm reduction workers and clinicians to help them tailor the care they provide to people who use drugs, while informing research and policy.

Every other week, results from samples checked by Toronto’s drug checking service are combined and presented using the graphs below. Sign up to be notified when new data is available.

Checked samples by sample type

Two types of samples are accepted by this drug checking service: substances and used paraphernalia. This graph shows how many samples have been checked since the launch of Toronto’s drug checking service – in total and by sample type.

Substances could be a small amount of powder, a crushed bit of a pill, blotter, or a small amount of liquid.

Used paraphernalia could be a used cooker or filter, or leftover liquid from a syringe.

Checked samples by expected drug

When a sample is submitted to be checked, the drug that sample is expected to contain is recorded (and is known as the “expected drug”). This graph shows which drugs were expected for substances. It can be filtered by the time period during which a substance was checked. Note that this graph does not include used paraphernalia.

Other expected drugs since the launch of this service include: 3-FA, 3-MeO-PCE, 3-MeO-PCP, 4-AcO-DET, 4-AcO-DMT, 4-AcO-MET, 4-FA, 4-HO-MET, 4-HO-MiPT, 4-AcO-DMT, 5-APB/6-APB, 5-MeO-DiPT, 5-MeO-DMT, 5-MeO-MiPT, AMT, caffeine, clomiphene citrate, codeine, DMT, DOM, down, DPT, etaqualone, GHB, hydromorphone, lisdexamfetamine, MDA, mescaline, methandrostenolone, MiPLA, modafinil, O-DSMT, O-PCE, opium, oxymetholone, Percocet, phenidate, tadalafil, tamoxifen, testosterone, tsunami, Viagra, and Z-drugs.

Unknown includes substances that did not have a recorded expected drug.

Polysubstance includes substances that had two or more expected drugs (e.g., fentanyl and methamphetamine).

Presence of the expected drug

This graph shows whether the expected drug was found in substances checked and, if it was, whether it was the only drug found or if it was found with other drugs. It can be filtered by the expected drug and the time period during which a substance was checked. Note that this graph does not include used paraphernalia.

Other drugs found

This graph shows the other drugs most commonly found in addition to the expected drug in substances checked, along with all unexpected noteworthy drugs found. It can be filtered by the expected drug and the time period during which a substance was checked. Note that this graph does not include used paraphernalia.

! Unexpected noteworthy drug: “Noteworthy drugs” are drugs that are highly potent, linked to overdose or other adverse effects, or may not be desired by some clients. Noteworthy drugs are flagged when they are unexpectedly found in checked samples. 

Trends in drugs found

This graph shows the presence of the expected drug and unexpected noteworthy drugs in substances checked over time. It can be filtered by the expected drug and any ‘drug found’ can be isolated using the legend on the right. Note that this graph does not include used paraphernalia.

Note: While Toronto’s drug checking service checks both substances and used paraphernalia, all graphs aside from the first include findings from substances only. Paraphernalia, like cookers, are often re-used. The mass spectrometry technologies used for this drug checking service are so sensitive that very trace amounts of drugs may be found. This means that when paraphernalia is re-used, drugs from past use may present in the results for the sample that is being checked. This can interfere with up-to-date drug supply monitoring and, for that reason, used paraphernalia has been excluded from these graphs.