It seems that the cost of practically everything is going up and here’s another item to add to the list – although thankfully it’s not something most of us need! The cost of cocaine has soared to record levels, due to a shortage of the drug.
According to a recent article in the Herald Sun, the wholesale price of a kilogram of cocaine is now around $380,000. This compares to around $250,000 before COVID. Australia is a very lucrative market for cocaine. To put the above figures into context, the drug can be bought for as little as $12,000 a kilogram in Mexico.
Part of the reason for the price rise in Australia a short of the drug, due to major seizures across the country. This includes a 400kg seizure of cocaine off the coast of South Australia, from on board a cargo vessel. In another major seizure, 320kg of cocaine was discovered in a camper van at Port Hedland in Western Australia.
The Herald Sun also reports that the cocaine shortage is causing tensions among bikie and organised crime gangs, eager to get a slide of the lucrative market.
More about cocaine
Cocaine is obtained from the leaves of the Coca species, which is native to South America. This is why cocaine must be imported into Australia and therefore is subject to seizures.
According to the Alcohol and Drug Foundation, cocaine is a stimulant drug, which means it speeds up messages travelling between the brain and the body. Effects can include:
- Aggressive and sometimes violent behaviour
- Fast breathing and heart rate
- High blood pressure
- Increased body temperature
- Indifference to pain
- Unpredictable behaviour
- If you take a large amount of a strong batch, an overdose can occur
While its effects are quite significant, thankfully cocaine isn’t widely used across Australia. Just over four per cent of people aged 14 years and over used cocaine in the last 12 months. However, this has been climbing over the past few years, which is a concern.
What does this all mean for drug testing?
Clearly, the above effects have no place during activities where safety is important, including some workplaces.
This is why Integrity Sampling tests for cocaine in its workplace testing. With our clients including businesses that operate in transportation, manufacturing, mining, agriculture, aviation and the like, cocaine has no place in the workplace.
Cocaine has no place in the workplace, which is why Integrity Sampling tests for cocaine. Credit Colin Davis https://unsplash.com/photos/pJgSrU_e2Ks