I visited my local Apple store today, to buy a Bluetooth-enabled “magic keyboard” for my laptop. The Gen Z guy behind the counter saw the Jefferson Airplane t-shirt I was wearing and exclaimed: “Love your t-shirt, man!”
I jokingly replied: “You should sell magic mushrooms with your magic keyboards.” He smirked and responded: “I’ll pass along your idea to Cupertino.”
Driving home, while patting myself on the back for my great wit, the thought suddenly occurred to me: Hey, why not sell magic mushrooms in Apple stores? Psychedelics are entering the consumer mainstream. My facetious idea could one day become reality.
As far as I know, Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) has no plans to sell psilocybin fungi (aka magic mushrooms) with its products…yet. But the fact is, psychedelics are soon coming to a retail store near you, just as surely as the world witnessed the rise of marijuana dispensaries.
Along with marijuana, psychedelics are becoming the next “edgy” money-making endeavor for investors who are willing to shoulder more risk for greater reward.
Medical research increasingly confirms the efficacy of psychedelics to treat physical and mental ailments. Entrepreneurs, consumers and investors are jumping aboard the psychedelics movement, an accelerating trend that’s reminiscent of the legal and societal normalization of marijuana.
Several mushroom species naturally contain the compound psilocybin, which has hallucinogenic properties akin to LSD. Scientists are excited about the possibilities of using psilocybin and LSD to treat various disorders, such as depression and PTSD.
The psychedelics industry could capture a significant chunk of the $28.6 billion global antidepressant market in coming years. Entrepreneurs are sitting up and taking notice. An increasing number of psychedelic biotech outfits are going public. Venture capital firms and even exchange-traded funds are emerging to cater to the trend.
Psychedelic drugs remain illegal at the federal level and in most states. But there’s been a surge of clinical trials in recent years testing illicit psychedelic drugs such as psilocybin, LSD, and MDMA (also known as ecstasy) to treat mental-health disorders, generally with the close supervision of a psychotherapist (see chart, with data as of July 30):
More than a dozen state and local governments are striving to decriminalize psychedelics. From Massachusetts to California, advocates are making significant progress in expanding a national movement that has already lifted restrictions on these substances in many jurisdictions.
Once associated with 1960s hippies, psychedelics are now eagerly consumed by corporate CEOs, soccer moms, grandparents, teachers, and other segments of ordinary society.
I never thought I’d live to see psychedelics invade straight-laced suburbia, but then again, I never thought I’d live to see my elderly mother take cannabis gummies to alleviate her arthritis.
Measure 109, the Psilocybin Program Initiative, was on the ballot in Oregon as an initiated state statute on November 3, 2020. It was approved, with nearly 56% of the vote. The move made Oregon the first state in the nation to allow the use of psilocybin in therapy.
A second, separate ballot measure in Oregon also was approved that decriminalizes possession of small amounts of LSD, heroin, cocaine, oxycodone, mescaline, and other drugs. Oregon now has the most liberal drug laws in the nation.
The latest cities where the psychedelics revolution is unfolding are Grand Rapids, Michigan; Easthampton, Massachusetts; and Arcata, California. Let’s take a look.
The city’s chapter of the advocacy group Decriminalize Nature is working to advance a psychedelics decriminalization initiative. Political observers say there’s a good chance that the measure could go to a vote by the end of the year.
City attorneys are scrutinizing the proposed language. If the wording of the bill passes legal muster, it would be given to the city commission’s Legislative Committee to advise on whether the body should approve or reject it.
The Decriminalize Nature proposal would deprioritize police enforcement of simple possession and cultivation involving psychedelic substances. If approved, Grand Rapids would be the second Michigan city to pass psychedelics decriminalization, following the Ann Arbor City Council’s unanimous vote to pass a similar initiative last year.
The Easthampton City Council is exploring a resolution to decriminalize a wide range of psychedelic substances. Passage of the measure would make Easthampton the fourth city in the Bay State to enact such reforms.
Additional Massachusetts cities that have enacted the policy change are Northampton, Somerville and Cambridge.
The Arcata City Council’s Public Safety Committee recently advanced a psychedelics reform resolution led by a local chapter of Decriminalize Nature. The panel revised it to restrict the policies on deprioritizing enforcement to use and possession in private spaces. An educational component, to teach users about the risks and rewards of psychedelics, also was attached.
In California, Oakland and Santa Cruz have previously enacted psychedelics decriminalization.
Cannabis already is a huge global industry and as such, the major pot players are likely to co-opt the psychedelics movement through internal investments and mergers and acquisitions.
I’m keeping an eye on efforts to bring mushrooms, LSD, mescaline, and other psychedelics into the consumer mainstream. In the meantime, we’ve pinpointed the best cannabis investments available. Click here to learn more.