Global: Fair Trade ‘Cocaine’! Look at mee…I ‘snort’ responsibleee!!

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The real cost of cocaine: Following the drug from Colombian rainforests to British suburbia

‘There are some Londoners who think it is a victimless crime, taking cocaine at “middle-class parties”,’ Khan said. Dick criticised otherwise ethically minded users ‘who will sit round happily talking about global warming, fair trade, environmental protection and organic farming, but think there’s no harm in taking a bit of cocaine. Well, there is. There is misery throughout the supply chain.’

It’s a reasonable point. In an age when we put so much stock in consumer ethics, considering our footprint on the planet with every stride, why not investigate where your drugs come from, too?

If it ends with a snort, it begins with a seed…. In the first of a litany of environmental crimes occurring throughout the supply chain, the creation of clandestine farms means tearing down swathes of forest.

Rosie had no idea about its origins and doesn’t think about her complicity. She has two degrees, but thought cocaine came ‘from Cuba’ and was always ‘a powder… coming on a boat in the middle of the night’. She likes how coke makes her feel, but didn’t know about the environmental destruction, or cartel violence, or the risks taken by smugglers, or the bribes, or levamisole, or necrosis syndrome, or the young lives being ruined by county lines or lost in gang violence. (She did know about the Kinder eggs, but doesn’t seem very bothered.)

‘I had never really put too much thought into how it got here, just how I can get it,’ she says. And so the cocaine will keep on coming.

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