Seizures of homemade methamphetamine labs are down by nearly half in many high-use meth states.
But use of the drug remains high, because of imported Mexican meth.
Data compiled by The Associated Press shows that meth lab busts are down 40 percent this year in Tennessee, 34 percent in Missouri and nearly 50 percent in Oklahoma.
Enforcement actions and tougher laws are partly responsible, but experts say meth made by Mexican cartels has become so cheap and pure that it is finally supplanting meth made in home labs or inside cars.
The cartel’s reach has even expanded to in small towns and rural areas.