Dozens of sailors returned home after taking part in a naval operation that saw an enormous amount of cocaine seized off the coast of Central and South America.

HMCS Brandon and HMCS Edmonton returned to CFB Esquimalt Friday morning, with crew members of each ship taking part in the ceremonial first kiss with their loved ones.

“It’s always an electric feeling when you come back up the Strait of Juan de Fuca back home into Esquimalt, so it is wonderful to be back home,” said Lt.-Cmdr. Lucan Kenward of HMCS Edmonton.

Both coastal defense vessels took part in Operation Caribbe in the Caribbean Sea and eastern Pacific Ocean.

Over the 71-day mission, Canadians seized 2,800 kilograms of cocaine with a street value of roughly $7-million.

“What’s kind of unique in the Royal Canadian Navy is that you’re physically bringing this contraband onboard the ship and you know that that contraband is no longer going to find its way into the stream here in Canada or in the United States,” said Kenward.

Sailors detained around 100 drug smugglers in raids conducted by the Canadian Navy and the U.S. Coast Guard.

The operation is part of a larger multi-national mission to disrupt the flow of drugs in South American waters.