An analysis of waste water from the Noord-Holland town of Volendam shows its inhabitants use more cocaine and ecstasy than in major European cities such as Milan, Paris and London.
The research into Volendam’s water was carried out by the KWR Watercycle Research group on behalf of youth television programme Spuiten en Slikken.
This summer, KWR and other water research institutes carried out an analysis of raw sewage in 19 European cities and found Amsterdam and Antwerp had the highest rate of cocaine use, while the use of MDMA (ecstasy) was also highest in The Netherlands and Belgium.
The television show, which focuses on drugs and sex-related issues, wanted to know how accurate the figures are and commissioned the Volendam survey.
The findings are due to be presented on Sunday but show drugs consumption in the former fishing village reflects the general pattern in the Netherlands, the Dutch institute says.