Ports in Belgium and the Netherlands, Europe’s ‘Cocaine Superhighway,’ Tackle Drug Problem

by | Cannabis Times

 occupation with cocaine in Europe

Ports in Antwerp and The Netherlands Wage War Against Cocaine Trade

Cocaine, the notorious drug of choice for hipsters and party-goers alike, is causing quite a stir in the ports of Antwerp, Belgium and several cities in The Netherlands. These ports, known as Europe’s “cocaine superhighway,” are facing a surge in illicit trade of the drug, with criminals using clever tactics to smuggle it in.

But fear not, dear readers, for the ports are not backing down. In fact, they have ramped up their security measures to keep up with the high demand for cocaine in Europe. According to a report by Bloomberg, these ports are determined to put an end to the influx of cocaine disguised as innocent fruits and other goods.

Europe’s Cocaine Craze: A Growing Problem

According to the European Drug Report 2023, cocaine is the second most commonly used illicit drug in Europe, right after cannabis. And it seems that the demand for this white powder is only increasing, with Dutch authorities reporting a significant rise in seizures in recent years.

In 2023 alone, the Netherlands’ customs data showed a staggering 18% increase in cocaine seizures, reaching a total of 60,000 kilograms. And according to a sewage analysis conducted by the EU drugs agency and SCORE group, Antwerp has been identified as the cocaine capital of Europe for several years now.

Antwerp: The Cocaine Capital of Europe

Politico reports that Antwerp has once again claimed the title of Europe’s cocaine capital, with the highest consumption per capita. The city’s sewage analysis revealed a daily detection of 1,721 milligrams of cocaine per 1,000 people, a slight decrease from the previous year but still enough to top the list.

But Antwerp is not alone in this battle against cocaine. Five cities in The Netherlands also made it into the top 10, with three of them – Amsterdam, Leeuwarden, and Rotterdam – being major port destinations.

Record Seizures and Ongoing Efforts

In 2023, Antwerp set a record of 116 tons of cocaine seized, surpassing the previous record of 110 tons in 2022. And in a single bust on a freight vessel, authorities confiscated a whopping eight tons of cocaine.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Vincent Van Peteghem, expressed his gratitude and pride for the hard work and dedication of customs officers in the fight against drug trafficking. He also emphasized the government’s commitment to continue investing in resources and personnel to support customs in their efforts.

Meanwhile, Franky De Keyzer, chief of the city’s public prosecutor’s office, revealed that Dutch criminals have been taking over the port of Antwerp. Reports suggest that even teenagers are being paid to retrieve shipments of cocaine in Antwerp and Rotterdam.

The Growing Preoccupation with Cocaine in Europe

The report’s analysis of wastewater in 88 cities across 23 countries in the European Union and Turkey (home to 55.6 million people) showed a rise in cocaine consumption, followed by ketamine and MDMA. It seems that the preoccupation with cocaine in Europe is not slowing down anytime soon.