Magic mushrooms are one of the most popular psychedelics globally, which, in general, is not surprising for a knowledgeable person versed in the topic. They are favorites of many users since this psychedelic, unlike other drugs of this hallucinogenic category (such as LSD and mescaline), is a natural drug without the admixture of synthetically produced substances.
Moreover, its positive effects have already been proven while used to relieve the symptoms of anxiety, depression, oncological diseases, post-traumatic stress disorder, difficulties with concentration (ADHD) and impulse retention, and a vast number of other problems.
The primary active and hallucinogenic substance is called psilocybin, which turns into psychoactive psilocin when broken down in the stomach. It acts on the serotonin receptors in the brain and those brain areas responsible for long-term and short-term memory and on the part of the gray matter that provides the mechanisms of human self-identification. However, consumers always have one question: “are shrooms illegal?”. And we want to give a detailed answer to it.
History Of the US Magic Mushroom Laws
The history of magic mushrooms in the United States has roots in the mists of time since ancient Indian shamans used them to gain mystical experience. Also, for more than two millennia, the population of the American continent did not perceive psilocybin plants as a drug. On the contrary, they were perceived as a guide to the world of secret knowledge.
However, the hippie movement in the 60s and 70s of the last century proved that the components of mushrooms could be dangerous. Therefore, in 1971, the United Nations Convention on Psychotropic Substances and the US authorities introduced psilocybin to the list of controlled substances (CDSA 1). This meant that the country’s inhabitants had to officially perceive the magic mushrooms as “a drug with no recognized medical use.”
Magic mushrooms distribution became a criminal offense, although there were nuances that proved ambivalent about organic psilocybin mushrooms as a narcotic drug. This is not surprising because the harmful properties are several orders of magnitude lower than those of other substances from the list.
What Does The Law Say Now?
At the moment, the legal status of magic mushrooms looks very ambiguous, both in federal and regional legislation. This attitude turns the studied plant into a gray area, a blind spot in court cases. Much depends on the specific situation of the use of mushrooms.
This complexity of the definition of psychedelic mushrooms arises since the psychoactive substances psilocybin and psilocin themselves are indeed illegal and cannot be stored without a license. However, the rules do not say anything about psilocybin plants.
Still, it is worth remembering that in conditions where there are no clear instructions in the legislation on the procedure for action in ambiguous situations, the user or seller will be entirely dependent on the decision of the judge considering the case.
If you want to know exactly where you can take, grow and sell magic mushrooms as a therapeutic agent without any consequences, then remember this list:
• Throughout Oregon (November 2020 – Act No. 109).
Oregon is the first US state to legislate hallucinogenic plants as legal hallucinogens.
• Based in Denver, Colorado (from May 2019 year).
And this is the first city in the country, which began the so-called “flash mob” of decriminalizing magic mushrooms.
• In Oakland, California (since June 2019).
• In Santa Cruz, California (from January 2020).
• In Washington, Columbia (from November 2020).
• In Somerville, Massachusetts (effective January 2021).
• In Cambridge, Massachusetts (from February 2021).
In addition, very soon, all other towns and cities will join the list of cities in California. Nowadays, there is a particular bill to decriminalize not only psilocybin and psilocin but also several other psychedelic substances. For example, LSD, MDMA, and mescaline. Good news – it has already been approved!
Despite the general hype about the decriminalization of mushrooms in the United States, you should pay attention to the peculiarities of the legal regulation of the psilocybin issue in each state.
The Controlled Drugs And Substances Act
Even though it is still challenging to find a place in Canada where psilocin pills are legal, the Controlled Drugs And Substances Act (of 1974) prohibits the use of this drug. Quite recently, events began to take place, namely the amendment of the law that can positively affect the situation in the future.
We are talking about the fact that in August last year, the Canadian authorities announced the possibility of making exceptions to the law in the following circumstances:
• in the treatment of increased anxiety;
• with an incurable and excruciating form of cancer (four patients with oncology have already been allowed).
These amendments were made primarily for humane reasons and in connection with the great potential for the study and use of fungi in medical practice and scientific research.
Possession of Magic Mushrooms In The USA
Users often have several questions about the legality of owning psychedelic mushrooms. We are here to clarify incomprehensible nuances.
1) Selling Of Magic Mushrooms In The USA
So, the sale and storage of magic mushrooms containing psilocybin and psilocin in the composition is a priori considered illegal. In some states and cities, you will only be jailed for doing this if you do this business without a prescription.
On the other hand, everything is not so simple with mushroom spores because nothing is said about them in the legislation. In most states (except Idaho, California, and Georgia), possession and sale of disputes of shrooms are not punishable by law. Although even in such conditions, there were many cases when the court regarded the defendants’ actions as criminal preparation for the production of a full-fledged drug.
2) Importing And Exporting of Magic Mushrooms In The USA
The number of US states and countries that allow psilocybin mushrooms can be counted on one hand. Although most recently, Wake Jamaica in 2021 already carried out the first legal transportation from Jamaica to the states, which should be a good precedent for other countries. Concerning exports, here in the United States, there is a vast potential that will soon be realized.
3) Growing Magic Mushrooms In The USA
Self-cultivation of psilocybin plants equates to the manufacture of drugs in all states except New Mexico. The local authorities, back in 2015, at the trial in the court appeal that a man named David Ray Pratt was not guilty in a drug case, since, their opinion, when growing a product for personal use, this case does not require intervention severe punishment.
The Future Of Canadian Mushroom Laws
So far, there is no clear idea of the future of psychedelic mushrooms in Canada. But changes are already taking place, exceptions are being made to the List of Controlled Substances. In addition, supply and demand for the sale and purchase of psilocybin is proliferating, and the interest of future investors is increasing. Therefore, we can reasonably expect that it is not far from decriminalization.