Experts say high use of cocaine in the UK is fuelled by the UK's binge drinking culture, with many taking the stimulant to counteract the sedative effects of alcohol.

The US' close proximity to Mexico makes it easy and relatively cheap for Americans to access the drug.

Once the preserve of high society, it is now widely used across all social classes, as its price has fallen in real terms over the past decade and it can be delivered 'as quickly as a pizza'.

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) compiled a global league table of cocaine use based on latest data from 36 countries.

The OECD report warns: 'Drug use is linked with, or complicates responses to, a wide range of today's most pressing health and social issues.

'Among these are mental health issues, self-harm, homelessness, youth criminality and the exploitation of vulnerable individuals.'

Official data reveals there were 4,907 drug poisoning deaths in 2022 – a rate of 84.4 deaths per million people. This is the tenth consecutive annual rise, up on the 4,859 recorded in 2021 and the most since records began in 1997.

Separate data from the Office for National Statistics shows deaths involving cocaine have increased eight-fold over the past decade, and have risen for ten consecutive years.

In 2021, 840 people died in England and Wales due to cocaine, up from 112 deaths in 2011.