CanadaShrooms Montreal storefront has opened for a business selling hallucinogenic mushrooms, a type of fungi that is illegal to produce, possess or sell in Canada. The shop, FunGuyz, claims to be a medical dispensary and says it advocates legalizing psilocybin, the psychoactive ingredient found in magic mushrooms. A man who identified himself as a spokesperson for the chain refused to give his name or provide identification when approached by The Canadian Press.
The company’s website says it specializes in producing, cultivating and packaging “the highest quality shrooms” available. It offers free shipping on orders over a certain amount, and promises to have a package arrive at its customers’ door within two days of ordering.
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Last year, a handful of terminally ill patients were given exemptions from Canada’s drug law to use psilocybin to treat end-of-life anxiety. But that is a small fraction of the thousands of people who are seeking access to this plant, which can be picked in pastures and ditches on Vancouver Island and in parts of Haida Gwaii.
Psilocybin can cause hallucinations and other side effects such as muscle twitches, nausea and fear. It is also addictive and can increase heart rate, blood pressure and blood sugar. It can trigger depression and may be dangerous to someone who is prone to suicidal thoughts or behaviour. Health Canada warns that the mushroom’s effect can be unpredictable and should only be consumed under a doctor’s supervision. It also recommends that people wear close-toed shoes and stay away from light.