Magic mushroom research facility opens in Princeton, B.C.

Click to play video: 'Psilocybin development facility opens in Princeton'
Psilocybin development facility opens in Princeton
Psilocybin development facility opens in Princeton – May 31, 2022

Magic mushrooms are now growing in Princeton, B.C., as a new mushroom research and development facility opened on Friday.

Optimi Health Corp. is a Canadian-based company that grows psilocybin-producing mushrooms and functional mushrooms for clinical trials, drug companies, and medical facilities.

“We want to ramp this to full capacity, we want to make sure that we can get psilocybin medication to anybody in the world that needs it,” said Optimi Health’s head of cultivation Todd Henderson.

“We have one of the largest genetic banks in the world right now, definitely in the country. It is not available for recreation; it is not available to the general public yet but who knows what the future holds.”

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Health Canada recently launched a program that allows physicians to request government approval for patients to access the psychedelic compound that comes from magic mushrooms.

“It can potentially treat depression, anxiety, PTSD, behavioural issues — there are tons of clinic trials going on that are showing fantastic results,” said Henderson.

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The company hopes to change lives and end the stigma that surrounds the use of psychedelic mushrooms.

“Psilocybin has the potential to deal with and replace a lot of these synthetic drugs that are out there,” said Henderson.

“Just don’t be afraid of natural medicine. It was the way of our people for 1,000 years, why is it such a stigma now?”

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Optimi Health says they are the largest GMP-grade licensed facility in Canada. The facility includes two 10,000-square-foot buildings that are adjacent to each other, and each building has 10 different growing rooms that are heavily monitored.

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The facility can produce up to 4,000 pounds of mushrooms at a time and they plan to harvest at least 2,000 pounds per month.

“From the air systems to the quality of the materials we have put in, we have gone far and beyond hospital-grade so we really are a level above what a surgery or operating room would be,” said Optimi Health co-founder Bryan Safarik.

“And we have 100 per cent control, that is what makes it different. We can control the environment 100 per cent. We can repeat it and take all those analytics to help grow — and do amazing things with these mushrooms to show people what the future of medicine will really be like.”

The first growth of psilocybin mushrooms has already been completed and sold to a company in Nova Scotia.

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