For years, drugs have experienced a contentious relationship with the law. Stigma, conservatism, and a general lack of or desire for knowledge have pushed most illicit substances and their users into the darkest recesses of society, to be vilified and outcast. And yet those deemed acceptable, such as alcohol, tobacco, and opioid painkillers, may in fact be more deadly and problematic than any other.
When it comes to psychedelics, negative connotations are rife. The hallucinogen heyday of the 1960s triggered such a backlash that most of the western world swiftly put an end to their usage. And despite renewed interest into the possible benefits of such drugs, evidenced by countless recent studies, the majority of governments have preserved their strict stance on psychedelics.
But where do magic truffles fit in, from a legal standpoint? Do they share the same classification as magic mushrooms? And can you buy magic truffles online?
What Exactly are Magic Truffles?
Firstly, let’s get started by explaining the difference between truffles and mushrooms of the magic variety. Both substances are actually part of the same being. The mushroom represents the fruit of the organism above ground, while its subterranean half, the truffle, acts as a food and energy reserve below the surface, which is called into action when conditions turn hostile.
Truffles, otherwise known as sclerotia, are technically compact masses of mycelium, thread-like fibers or hyphae that form the vegetative part of the fungi. In simpler terms, the mycelium can be considered the roots, the mushroom, the flower.
Both magic truffles and mushrooms share the same ingredient that creates their magic: psilocybin. This powerful prodrug converts into psilocin once inside the body, influencing the brain and causing a multitude of effects. In substantial quantities, this impact can be quite intense, leading to the hyper hallucinogenic trips synonymous with psychedelics. In much smaller amounts, or microdoses, psilocybin has been proven to increase creative and cognitive functions, plus positively impact health and well-being in general.
Magic Truffles and the Law - Are They Legal?
Well, the answer to that question largely depends on where in the world you call home. In the US, a country notorious for its relentless ‘war on drugs’, psilocybin is classified as a schedule I substance; defined as a drug with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.
This flies in the face of study upon study from globally respected organizations, including the US’s own prestigious John Hopkins University, which has demonstrated the potential of psychedelics to safely and effectively tackle numerous mental health issues, including depression, anxiety, and end-of-life acceptance. Add to that the widespread belief that substances containing psilocybin are non-addictive, and the fact that magic mushrooms continuously top the list of the world’s safest recreational drug, and the US’s position seems unnecessarily severe.
In contrast to the US, the UK and, in fact, most nations, there are still some countries where the possession, sale and transportation of psilocybin mushrooms are completely legal. These include the Bahamas, Brazil, the British Virgin Islands, Jamaica, Nepal, and Samoa.
Despite this fairly limited selection, there are many more countries that have taken forward steps in at least decriminalizing the drug, particularly in terms of personal use. Such nations include Austria, Chile, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, and Uruguay. This more tolerant approach has even spread to a number of US cities, with Ann Arbor, Denver, Oakland, Santa Cruz, Somerville, Cambridge, and Washington D.C. all decriminalizing the use, sale, and transportation of psilocybin mushrooms.
"In fact, as of September 2019, psilocybin truffles
are fully taxed and legalized in accordance with Dutch law."
Are Both Magic Mushrooms and Truffles Legal in the Netherlands?
A land renowned for its liberalism: the world’s first country to legalize same sex marriage, one of the few nations where both euthanasia and prostitution are legal, and a country famed for its progressive attitude towards drugs. The Netherlands appears to take a more sensible approach to most things in life, refusing to let conservative mindsets cloud conventional judgement.
Yet in 2008, the Dutch took a step back from this liberal standpoint by tightening restrictions across their drug policy. The biggest blow of the new changes fell upon magic mushrooms. An outright ban on the use and cultivation of all psychedelic mushrooms was instigated in December of the same year and remains in force to the present day.
However, despite illegalizing over a hundred varieties of fungi, the government left a tiny, yet hugely consequential, loophole. Sclerotia or magic truffles were left off the hit list. Even with their psilocybin content and potent potential, they are currently still legal and available to buy in smart shops, coffee shops and online, across the country. In fact, as of September 2019, psilocybin truffles are fully taxed and legalized in accordance with Dutch law.
When ordering online, always make sure to check the restrictions in your homeland for up-to-date information. Even in a nation like the USA, things are slowly changing, with Oregon recently becoming the first state to fully legalize psychedelics. As scientific support continues to grow and society opens up to new ways of thinking, the future for magic truffles and mushrooms looks more promising now than ever before.