It’s an ongoing battle in Canada, as the country continually tries to squash out illegal mushroom dispensary FunGuyz. After a third raid at the new Quebec location, in just a couple months, things have certainly heated up. Here’s the low-down on this ongoing battle, and what we can expect in the future.
Magic mushrooms and Canada
Magic mushrooms are illegal in Canada for all uses. This means the production, sale, and possession for medical or recreational purposes, is not allowed. According to the government site, Canada.ca:
“There is increasing interest in the potential therapeutic uses of magic mushrooms and of psilocybin, one of the active ingredients in magic mushrooms. While clinical trials with psilocybin have shown promising results, at this time, there are no approved therapeutic products containing psilocybin in Canada or elsewhere. Clinical trials are the most appropriate and effective way to advance research with unapproved drugs such as psilocybin while protecting the health and safety of patients.”
What Canada does allow, is use through the Special Access Program. Through this program, health care providers can request certain drugs that are in clinical trials in Canada, or already approved in other countries. “This program provides access to non-marketed drugs for the treatment of serious or life-threatening conditions when conventional therapies have failed, are unsuitable or are unavailable.”
Psilocybin can be accessed through this program, although its not 100% for sure. The ability to request it at all was put back in place at the beginning of 2022; when the county’s Food and Drug Regulations were amended. Any request for the compound must come with plenty of backing for its claim of need, and there is no guarantee for approval.
Canada vs FunGuyz magic mushroom dispensary
Canadian governments are currently quite unhappy that a specific illicit magic mushroom dispensary, just doesn’t seem to go away. Like the fungi it sells, it seems to keep maintaining and popping back up, despite several raids. In fact, after three, it kind of seems like the mushroom dispensers, might have a decent backup plan. At the very least, they seem prepared.
FunGuyz is an illicit magic mushroom dispensary in Montreal, Quebec that opened its doors on Tuesday, July 11th. It already functions as a chain in Ontario, with 13 different dispensaries throughout the state, according to the locations on the company’s site. All are open and operational, expect for two; which may or may not reopen. It offers products containing psilocybin, the main psychedelic compound of magic mushrooms. Products are not limited to dried fungi; the shop offers psilocybin products in other forms like pills and chocolate bars, as well.
The day it opened, the store was raided by Montreal police, and four were arrested. It was not clear who got arrested; whether cops targeted just store personnel, or if they went after buyers. Also on that day, as per globalnews.co, spokesperson for the company, and possible owner, Edgras Goban (also written as Edgar Gorbans), said he expected the shop to reopen within 24 hours. According to Goban, it was a standard raid, which he classified as a waste of taxpayer money. He said these raids happen in Ontario as well; so the company knows what its dealing with already.
Just how prepared is the operation for police involvement? Said Goban prior to law enforcement performing the raid, “We do expect the police to come in and raid us because obviously what we’re doing, it’s illegal. The idea behind everything is, are the police willing to use the taxpayers’ money for mushroom stuff?”
The second raid came on Thursday, July 20th. This raid was 48 hours after the store reopened from its first raid by the police, two weeks prior. The store was raided this time, along with a residence above the store premises, and another residence in a different location. This time around, five people were arrested, including one woman for drug trafficking.
Most recent raid and FunGuyz mentality
It reopened once again. And it was raided once again on August 7th. Like the other times, law enforcement took a bunch of products, and arrested one man. After this raid, according to law enforcement, the three raids produced a total in seizures of: four kilograms of psilocybin bulk, 1,600 pills, 753 grams of psilocybin edibles, and $10,000 in cash.
There is obviously quite a bit of vigor behind this operation. There have been three raids now on just this location, and no sign that Goban intends to let up on his end. In fact, it seems like he invites the raids. He explained to CTV News via Psychedelic Spotlight, “With us having criminal charges, it’s a lot easier for us to go through the system in order to do the constitutional challenge.”
Not only does Goban seem to welcome the challenge, he knew full well it was coming. This already happened with all other store locations in Ontario; and he was told – indirectly – it would happen in Quebec. Montreal’s Mayor Valerie Plante warned “Mushrooms [are] not legal in Canada so, of course, we will apply the law and Montreal police officers will be ready to act based on the law.”
It looks like Goban will get his chance to up the ante; or otherwise, give up on that location. It was reported via CBC News that the Montreal police were given an injunction for the building, to keep the business from opening for a fourth time. I expect Goban foresaw the possibility of this move as well. We’ll have to wait to find out his next move.
FunGuyz in Ontario
The most interesting part of this story, is that it doesn’t exist in a vacuum. For whatever is going on in Montreal, FunGuyz already functions broadly and openly in Ontario, with 13 dispensaries in action (or working to be). And just the fact that there are so many, is a pretty good indication that Goban knows what he’s doing.
His store in Windsor, Ontario was raided just a week after opening on June, 29th. At the time, Goban was just as nonchalant as he was with the Quebec raids, saying “It’s normal. I’ve been through multiple raids, right? So it doesn’t shock me anymore.” According to Windsor police, seized products included psilocybin capsules (1,120), dried mushrooms (184 grams), and different infused edible products. Law enforcement also seized $5,535 in cash.
That location was already the 11th one to open. The first opened six months prior in 2023, and according to Goban and law enforcement reports, all have been raided at some point. However, all currently are open and running except the newest Quebec location, and two in Ontario. Perhaps Goban gets it right, simply by understanding the situation and being prepared. Although it sounds like the guy is certainly gunning for something beyond simply selling mushrooms, and this whole ordeal seems to be his way of building a case.
The two stores that might have closed for good, are the locations in Wasaga Beach and Bradford; both Ontario locations. Google Maps lists both the Wasaga site and Bradford site as ‘temporarily closed.’ These both were forced to close several months ago, and might represent a roadblock for FunGuyz that it might not get through right now. However, the other store locations are operational, and the story isn’t over.
For its part, FunGuyz isn’t trying to make a buck, without care to the safety concerns of the population. It does require all patrons be at least 19 years old, and to show a valid ID. And all must sign a waiver that says they understand their rights, and the liabilities attached; in order to obtain products. The stores certainly aren’t making a point of selling to minors, which is one of the main concerns of a magic mushroom industry.
FunGuyz isn’t the only magic mushroom dispensary in Canada. Stories pop up all the time about operations. Magic mushrooms are sold in both weed and mushroom dispensaries. I’ve seen them in plenty of illegal dispensaries in the US; and there are reports from Vancouver and beyond, of shops selling such products. Beyond that, some stores in America are selling ‘legal’ magic mushrooms, which generally amounts to sales of Amanita mushrooms. Another great hallucinogenic choice, but certainly not psilocybin mushrooms.
Canada is sure trying hard to get rid of FunGuyz magic mushroom dispensaries, with three raids already against the illicit mushroom sellers in just Quebec. As Goban has so far mainly prevailed in Ontario, and is actively seeking change; it seems this fight is gearing up to be a good one. And possibly one that results in a change in formal policy.
There is a lot of push in Canada to reform psychedelics laws, particularly for medical and religious purposes. Right now, both Canada and the US are illegal for psychedelics; while the US does have two states, Oregon and Colorado, that already passed some kind of legalization measures. And psilocybin and MDMA drugs under research with breakthrough therapy status designations.
Hello cannabis aficionados! Cool that you’re here with us at Cannadelics.com, an independent news publication dedicated to reporting on the burgeoning cannabis and hallucinogen landscapes. Head our way whenever possible to keep up with updates; and get yourself signed up to the Cannadelics Weekly Newsletter; so you’re always up on what’s going down.