Coffee bean

$50 million worth of cocaine found in shipment of coffee beans at Nespresso factory

Most Nespresso users keep their machines handy as they are good for a quick and economical pick-me-up. But if you were looking for a much stronger pick-me-up at much higher prices, you could have skipped the coffee pods and headed straight for the Nespresso factory in the Swiss town of Romont. Authorities recently found approximately $50 million worth of cocaine.

Swiss police were called to the scene on Monday after workers “discovered an undetermined white substance while unloading bags of freshly delivered coffee beans,” Friborg police wrote in a report. In the end, more than 1,100 pounds of cocaine (or 500 kilos if you prefer street slang) were discovered in five shipping containers, all of which police say were delivered the same day by train. The search included the assistance of 20 customs officers.

A pile of Nespresso coffee capsules

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After further analysis, authorities said they believed the shipment – which was more than 80% pure – originated in Brazil and was likely destined for the European market where it would have an estimated market value of more than 50 million. of dollars.

“For Freiburg, it’s definitely a big seizure, it’s really quite exceptional. It’s the first time we’ve made such a find,” said Marc Andrey, the city’s security chief, according to Euronews. . “I think it’s also one of the biggest seizures in Switzerland: not the biggest, but one of the biggest.”

Meanwhile, Nespresso said the drugs did not contaminate the production of their coffee capsules in a statement to the BBC, adding: “We want to reassure consumers that all of our products are safe to drink. “.

The smuggling of cocaine and food has a well-established history. Over the years, the illegal substance has been hidden in frozen onion rings, corn flakes, wine, frozen fish, pumpkins and – yes – coffee has also been tried before. In fact, this isn’t even the first time we’ve covered the arrival of cocaine at a major brand’s facilities: in 2016, millions of dollars worth of cocaine were discovered at a Coca-Cola factory in France.