Before discussing the specifics of American psychedelic landscapes, it is important that we first determine the difference between decriminalization and legalization. While the two may seem similar at first glance, they are actually very different concepts. And both terms have great relevance in the context of psychedelics. More and more companies are now beginning to recognize the very real potential of drugs such as MDMA and psilocybin from a clinical and therapeutic perspective. Where there is potential for treatment, there is potential for investment. If he can learn anything from cannabis, the legalization of psilocybin has the potential to become an overcrowded industry in the near future. “No matter what this initiative tries to do or says, it will end up in the hands of our children,” she said. “And they`ll think that because it`s legal, that`s for sure.” Even at the height of the war on drugs, Jamaica never made psilocybin mushrooms illegal. Nevertheless, the production and sale of magic mushrooms has traditionally been relegated to the informal economy.
That is starting to change. Matthew Stoneberger, president of the Colorado Drug Investigators Association, said arrests for possession and distribution of psilocybin are relatively rare. Nevertheless, he fears that the legalization or decriminalization of mushrooms may be risky. How this happened is a saga in itself. Although psilocybin mushrooms are illegal, psilocybin truffles – the fruiting body of a fungus – are not. In short, there was a loophole in the law banning magic mushrooms that were never clogged. This led to psilocybin truffles being legally sold in “smart stores” in the Netherlands. And while this has been done through legislative oversight, there has been no serious effort to add psilocybin truffles to the list of banned substances since the passage of the Psilocybin Mushroom Ban Act in 2008. While Oregon is currently the only U.S. state where psilocybin has become legal for therapeutic purposes, more than a dozen other cities and counties have effectively decriminalized psilocybin and other entheogens. A measure that would legalize psychedelics nationwide will be presented to Colorado voters in November 2022.
Five months ago, she told lawmakers in Washington who were considering a bill that would legalize the use of psilocybin that the trips she experienced to Jamaica “saved my life.” Psilocybin mushrooms are one of the most common types of psychedelics due to their relative safety and popularity. They are also quite easy to find on the black market. However, they are illegal in all 50 states. In the United States, psychedelic drugs still have a long way to go before they are widely accepted. As of July 2022, they are still completely illegal in almost every state, with a few notable exceptions. At the federal level, all major psychedelic drugs beyond ketamine are now classified in Schedule I by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. At the state level, many medicinal mushrooms are allowed. However, psilocybin mushrooms remain illegal. The cities of Somerville, Northampton and Cambridge have decriminalized psilocybin mushrooms, so their possession and consumption have a low stated priority. Matthews believes this trend supports his argument that legalization won`t lead to an increase in overall crime — because despite Denver`s decriminalization, mushroom users don`t seem to break the law more often than before. NMHA organizer Veronica Lightning Horse Perez said some miners will try mushrooms — whether illegal or not — but they shouldn`t risk long-term legal consequences.
As a mother herself, she said parents have a responsibility to educate their children about the effects of different substances. California has also considered decriminalization and legalization, but legislation was suspended after it was decided that more time was needed to advocate for reform. Ohio, Virginia, West Virginia, and Maine are all in a similar boat. Although psilocybin and psilocin have long been listed as controlled substances in Switzerland, the mushrooms themselves were only explicitly banned in 2002, first by the Swiss Agency for Therapeutic Products and then by a revision of the Narcotics Act in 2008. Until 2002, magic mushrooms were readily available in Switzerland and, according to a Swiss medical agency, their ban was an attempt to prevent their growing popularity in the country. However, some local health and legal authorities have criticized the ban on magic mushrooms, as surveys have shown that it has little impact on reducing their consumption in the country.   In 2021, the first functional and psychedelic mushroom retail store in Jamaica was opened by Silo Wellness. Since then, more mushroom stores have sprung up in Bob Marley`s hometown.
Similarly, healing centers and psilocybin retreats thrive throughout the island nation, attracting not only local residents, but also international travelers. As a result, Jamaica is quickly becoming an internationally known destination for psychedelics. The legal status of illegal acts with psilocybin mushrooms varies worldwide. Psilocybin and psilocin are listed on List I of medicines under the 1971 United Nations Convention on Psychotropic Substances.  List I drugs are defined as drugs with high potential for abuse or drugs that do not have a recognized medical use. However, psilocybin mushrooms have had many medicinal and religious uses in dozens of cultures throughout history and have significantly lower potential for abuse than other List I drugs.  First of all, there are a variety of different types of psychedelics, each with unique properties. Some grow naturally in nature, while others are produced synthetically in laboratories.
Depending on how these substances are grown or produced and where they are grown or produced, this can determine their legal status. The Food and Drug Administration recently called psilocybin a “breakthrough therapy,” but its use has not been widely approved. Earlier this year, the American Psychiatric Association said there was “currently not enough scientific evidence to support the use of psychedelics to treat psychiatric disorders” outside of approved trials. In many national, state, and provincial drug laws, there is a lot of ambiguity about the legal status of psilocybin mushrooms, as well as a strong element of selective application in some places, as psilocybin and psilocin are considered illegal to possess without a license to possess as substances, but the mushrooms themselves are not mentioned in these laws. The legal status of psilocybe spores is even more ambiguous because the spores do not contain psilocybin or psilocin and are therefore not illegal to sell or possess in many jurisdictions, although many jurisdictions are prosecuted under broader laws that prohibit items used in the manufacture of drugs. Some jurisdictions (such as the U.S. states of California, Georgia, and Idaho) have expressly prohibited the sale and possession of psilocybin mushroom spores.