More than 500kg of cocaine has been discovered in a shipment of coffee beans sent to a Nespresso factory, according to Swiss police.
The authorities were alerted after staff at the plant in Romont found a white powder while unloading the sacks, which had just arrived from Brazil.
Analysis confirmed the powder was cocaine, with an estimated street value of 50m Swiss francs (£41m).
Head of security for the region Marc Andrey said: “For Fribourg, it’s definitely a big seizure, it’s really quite exceptional.
“I think it’s also one of the biggest seizures in Switzerland.”
Nespresso, which makes the individual coffee pods, said in a statement: “The substance in question did not come into contact with any of our products or production equipment used to make our products.
“As a police investigation is under way, we cannot share more details.
“We want to reassure consumers that all our products are safe to consume.”
The seizure comes as a new report said Europe is increasingly becoming a hub for production and trafficking of cocaine to other parts of the world, in addition to being a major market.
After cannabis, cocaine is the most consumed drug in Europe, with millions of users and sales of around €10.5bn (£9bn) in 2020, according to Europol and the European Monitoring Center for Drugs and Drug Addiction.
The European market is growing, driven by higher production in South America and the increased capability to process the raw drug in Europe itself, the agencies said.
Cocaine imported into Europe from South America is increasingly re-exported to other parts of the world, notably the Middle East and Asia, making Europe “a key trans-shipment point for drugs originating elsewhere”, the report added.