The Magic Mushroom Dispensary Moves Into the Mainstream

When it comes to mind-twirling psychedelics, magic mushroom dispensary are moving from the fringes into the mainstream. In Vancouver, a new shop called the Mushroom Dispensary offers spores, products and a service where customers can get help preparing for and experiencing psilocybin’s hallucinogenic effects. They can flash ID, sign a health form and then peruse glass cases filled with strains of mushrooms like Penis Envy and Jedi Mind Trick.

In addition to the mushrooms, which vary in shape, color and place of origin, the store sells mushroom chocolates, microdosing capsules and tinctures. But the main draw is the dried mushrooms and their psilocybin content, which costs between $10 and $200 an ounce. A nurse helps customers select their psilocybin dose and recommends mushrooms that are suitable for different purposes. The nurse says some are better for focus or relaxation, while others provide euphoria or feelings of spiritual connection.

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The psilocybin-only store is part of a burgeoning underground market that has proliferated in cities where the hallucinogenic drug is legal. In San Francisco, for example, there are now two mushroom “churches,” one of which was raided by police last year. Its owner was charged with three felonies, prompting criticism from Supervisor Dean Preston whose district includes Haight Street.

Winnipeg officials say they’re aware of Magic Mushroom but haven’t issued tickets to the dispensary, which doesn’t need a license because it’s selling mushrooms legally. Officials say they want to ensure that the fungus is sold only to adults and used responsibly. The federal drug regulator, Health Canada, warns that taking the mushrooms can cause anxiety, fear, nausea, muscle twitches and increased heart rate and blood pressure.