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Most Popular Drugs At Music Festivals Study: What People Take At EDC, Burning Man, Ultra & More

by Ryan Middleton   May 7, 2015 11:19 AM EDT

Drugs and music go hand in hand. Drugs at music festivals are ubiquitous and available in all shapes and sizes. A new study attempted to quantify the levels of drug use going on 15 of the major festivals in the United States and Europe. Drugabuse.com looked at 3,622,365 Instagram posts mentioning festivals and linked them to possible language relating to drug use and the results aren't that surprising. Some of the major EDM festivals like EDC and Ultra Music Festival reference Molly/ MDMA the most, while Marley Fest has the highest total for marijuana. Burning Man features a variation of drugs including DMT, mushrooms and LSD.

Alcohol was mentioned by 90% of participants at Chili Cook-Off, which could have been skewed by Brad Paisley's hit "Alcohol." He happened to be a headliner that year.

Pot seems to have a remarkably small number across the board, but maybe with drug sniffing dogs becoming more common at festivals, users are turning to their harder, more dangerous and less odorous counterparts to get their high.

The festivals who talk the most about drugs are Camp Bisco, Tomorrowland and Burning Man, which all happen to be camping festivals and a lean towards more psychedelic and electronic music. Burning Man is likely higher, but many folks may have left their phones at home.

Gathering data on illegal drug use is notoriously difficult to do since every festival is forced to take a zero tolerance policy for permit and insurance reasons.

It is remarkable however that this many people would share their drug use on Instagram when their current or future employers could possibly find those posts. Perhaps some of their substances make people forget about those consequences.

The study does not capture all of the people who don't broadcast their drug use to the world on social media. We will probably never know the true numbers of people who take drugs at festivals and maybe for the better or they might all get shut down.

See the full graphic of drug use on Instagram below via Billboard.

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