In the tech world, drug use has become part of the corporate culture, forcing boards of directors and business leaders to grapple with their responsibility for employees who frequently use drugs. This is reported by The Wall Street Journal.

The focus is on technical managers and workers who see psychedelics and similar substances, including psilocybin, ketamine and LSD, as a way to make a breakthrough in business.

Drug use has long been tolerated in Silicon Valley. But this phenomenon worries some companies and their boards of directors. They fear prosecution for illegal activities, according to consultants and others close to the companies.

Some start experimenting with psychedelics in search of mental clarity or to solve health problems, and end up using them more often at parties or raves in Silicon Valley. Here they play a role similar to alcohol at a cocktail party.

“A few years ago, talking about psychedelics in Silicon Valley was a big no-no,” says Edward Sullivan, chief executive of Velocity Coaching, a company that coaches startup founders and corporate executives. “It has really changed.”

According to him, recently about 40% of his clients are interested in psychedelics, while five years ago there were only a few. Some executive coaches say they are now helping companies and executive teams navigate drug use.

The informal use of psychedelics in the tech world is fueled by the formal clinical work of doctors and researchers looking for new solutions to mental health problems. Ketamine, which doctors have long used as an anesthetic, is sometimes prescribed to treat depression or post-traumatic stress disorder, often as pills or infusions in clinics. Investors invest in companies working on the development of psychedelic therapies.

According to research firm BrandEssence, the market for psychedelic drugs, which includes companies engaged in research and trials to legalize use, is expected to reach $11.8 billion by 2029, up from $4.9 billion in 2022.

It was previously reported that during the international law enforcement operation under the code name SpecTor 288 sellers and buyers of drugs from all over the world were arrested. Police also seized €50.8 million ($55.9 million) in cash and cryptocurrency as part of the operation.