LegitScript analysts uncovered the problematic product Amanita muscaria during their monitoring work. Read further to understand why it’s problematic, and how it differs from another more common psychedelic drug.
Fly Agaric Is Not The Same As Traditional Magic Mushrooms — Here’s Why
In recent months, merchants have notably increased their offering of products containing various types of psychoactive fungi. Of particular concern is the sale of edible products containing the species Amanita muscaria.
Amanita muscaria, also known as “Fly Agaric,” is a type of mushroom known for its hallucinogenic properties and has been used in many cultures worldwide for millennia as part of religious ceremonies and other cultural reasons.
Due to the psychoactive nature of these products, merchants offering them may target individuals seeking psychedelic experiences or alternative remedies, capitalizing on the mushroom’s legal ambiguity in some jurisdictions. In addition to these products being marketed as psychoactive and/or hallucinogenic, they are also sometimes labeled as “magic mushroom alternatives”.
The Difference Between Psilocybin and Amanita muscaria
Psilocybe cubensis (P. cubensis), commonly referred to as magic mushrooms, is recognized as the most prevalent species of psychoactive fungi. Although Amanita muscaria and P. cubensis possess psychoactive properties, the alkaloids responsible for their hallucinogenic effects differ significantly.
In the case of Amanita muscaria, the compounds responsible for these effects are muscimol and ibotenic acid. Even at dosages equivalent to common Psilocybe cubensis dosages, the psychoactive effects of Amanita muscaria are generally reported as less intense.
Amanita muscaria Is Toxic To Humans in Higher Doses
At higher levels, more severe symptoms may arise, ranging from respiratory depression to metabolic acidosis, and in rare cases, even manifesting in a coma. Notably, it is possible for Amanita muscaria to be treated in order to reduce toxicity risk so the potential health risk for finished edible products is unclear.
The compounds in Amanita muscaria can lead to toxicity symptoms in larger amounts. Common symptoms of toxicity include:
- Visual/auditory hallucinations
Amanita muscaria is regulated in a number of jurisdictions. For instance, in Louisiana, Amanita muscaria is prohibited for non-ornamental purposes, despite not being scheduled federally in the United States. In contrast, countries such as Israel, the Netherlands, and others prohibit the sale of Amanita muscaria at the national level.
Additionally, muscimol, the psychoactive substance in Amanita muscaria, is controlled in Australia. Given its complex regulatory status, marketing around use for psychoactive purposes, and the risk of potential harm, LegitScript reports these products at the BRAM/VIRP risk level regardless of jurisdiction.
LegitScript Flags Problematic and/or Illegal Drugs For Sale Online
The illicit and potentially dangerous nature of some of these products, as well as their distribution, is of particular concern to payment processors, presenting an elevated risk for BRAM and VIRP violations. If you’re concerned about potential fines from major card brands, contact us.
In response to the rise of Amanita muscaria, our analysts diligently search and flag risks associated with these merchants. LegitScript will continue to monitor for problematic products and report risk accordingly.