Agriculture has been a victim of the methamphetamine trade by the fact that some of the ingredients, although they are legitimate ag products, are stolen from farm sites and used to make the drug. Because many farm and ranch sites are often isolated and unattended during evening hours, they are possible targets for either robberies or actual methamphetamine production.

The Minnesota Department of Health reminds all producers to watch for the following indicators that something is up:

  • Unusual and excessive traffic at night.
  • Burn pits, stained soil or dead vegetation, indicating that chemicals or waste has been dumped.
  • Empty containers from antifreeze, white gas, ether, starting fluids, Freon, lye or drain cleaners, paint thinner, acetone or rubbing alcohol.
  • Compressed gas cylinders or camp-stove fuel containers.
  • Packaging from Epsom or rock salt.
  • Anhydrous ammonia tanks or propane tanks.
  • Pyrex, glass or Corning Ware containers, with dried chemical deposits remaining.
  • Bottles or containers connected with rubber hosing and duct tape.
  • Coolers, thermos bottles or other cold-storage containers.
  • Respiratory masks and filters, dust masks, funnels, hosing and clamps.
  • Coffee filters, pillow cases or bed sheets (used to filter red phosphorus.)
  • Buildings that smell like chemicals. This includes sweet, bitter, ammonia or solvent smells.

If you suspect you have discovered the site of an active or abandoned drug lab, immediately notify local law enforcement. Do not take matters into your own hands.

It’s important to note that owners of buildings found to be used for meth production are liable for clean-up costs and possibly more. So, it’s best to be proactive and aware.