Where Does Cocaine Come From
Where does cocaine come from? Cocaine comes from a plant known as the coca plant. It is then manufactured into what users know as powder or rock cocaine. Cocaine has been used throughout history as an agent to numb or simulate the user. It was first used medicinally by Sigmund Freud in 1880. He promoted cocaine as a safe and useful elixir to cure depression and sexual impotence.
In 1886, cocaine was added to the soft drink we know now as Coca Cola which created euphoric and energizing effects in those who drank it. In the coming years, cocaine was added to many other elixirs and tonics creating and new found "cure all" for anything and everything that ailed you. In later years, cocaine was discovered to have many dangerous side effects which ultimately led to its removal from all products that contained it. In 1920, cocaine was added to the list of narcotics outlawed by the United States.
In addition to the question of “Where does cocaine come from?” it is important to know the location of its origin. Cocaine in its various forms is derived from the coca plant which is native to the high mountain ranges of South America. The coca leaves were used by natives of this region and acted upon the user as a stimulant. The stimulating effects of the drug increase breathing which increases oxygen intake. This afforded native laborers of the region the stamina to perform their duties in the thin air at high altitudes. In time, science figured out how to maximize the strength and effect of the drug contained in the coca leaves.
The white crystal powder we have come to know as cocaine was created by chemically
synthesizing coca leaves. As time passed, newer methods of magnifying the euphoric
effects of the drug were invented which has led us to the most potent and addictive
form of the drug, crack.
Coca has been grown commercially in Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Indonesia, Nigeria, Malaysia and Japan. The first cocaine cartel was formed, not in Columbia, but in Amsterdam.
Founded in 1910, the Cocaine Manufacturers Syndicate included pharmaceutical giants Merck, Sandoz and Hoffman-LaRoche. At present, however, most production occurs in clandestine laboratories in South America.
Since the 1980's, cocaine has become a significant export-earner for many poor
South American countries. In the year 2000, South America exported some 1000
tons of refined cocaine.
In the 1980’s, millions of drug-naive Americans were introduced to 'decocainised' coca tea imported from South America. In Peru, the legitimate cultivation of coca, and the production of all cocaine licensed for pharmaceutical export, was controlled by the government's own National Enterprise Of Coca.
In a bid to expand and diversify its product range, the National Enterprise Of Coca promoted the benefits of coca in the form of a wholesome traditional beverage.