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Stepan Company actually sells the cocaine to a pharmaceutical company, for use in medicine.

"The plant is the only commercial entity in the USA authorized by the Drug Enforcement Administration to import coca leaves, which come primarily from Peru. Approximately 100 metric tons of dried coca leaf are imported each year. The cocaine-free leaves are sold to The Coca Cola Company, while the cocaine is sold to Mallinckrodt, a pharmaceutical firm, for medicinal purposes." -- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stepan_Company

> for use in medicine.

Ear-nose-throat guys still use it for contact anesthetic. I had a light shoved up my nose and then back into the throat while they examined the result of a punch to the throat. (Martial arts FTW.) I sat there amazed that I didn't really give a damn with a giant flextube ramming into my face.

I got some fryer grease splashed in my face many years ago. The pain in my left eye was intense. The doctor at the emergency room gave me a couple drops from an eye-dropper which immediately removed the pain, and I have to say, put me in a fairly chatty mood. I asked him what it was and he said "Liquid cocaine, my friend."

Ah, yes. Nose medicine.

Because of this legal medicinal use, cocaine is actually a Schedule II drug in the US. Marijuana is Schedule I. Weed is actually more illegal than cocaine.

> for use in medicine

The compound is cocaine hydrochloride.

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