One of California’s most iconic cannabis brands is officially shrooming. Cookies, which was started by rapper Berner and cultivation expert Jigga back in 2012, has announced a new line of capsules loaded with a blend of CBD and other cannabinoids, terpenes, and — in a first for the company — non-psychedelic, medicinal mushrooms.
Cookies sells its products in an array of legal cannabis markets, from Florida to Oklahoma to Michigan to Spain and Israel. The team hopes that the changing drug laws will allow them to start developing products with more magical forms of fungi in the future, as well.
“That is our hope, anyway,” an unidentified company representative told journalist Lindsey Bartlett of Forbes. “Of course, it comes down to legislation, but we launched with CBD, are expanding into THC, and hope to create a psilocybin product when the time comes.”
For now, consumers will need to make do with the brand’s medicinal blends. Caps is Cookies’ first mushroom product line and will be sold for $55 per 30 capsules in one of two formulas appropriate for day and nighttime use.
What makes Caps unique from other mushroom and cannabinoid blends on the wellness market is that Cookies uses a concentrated terpene blend from True Terpene’s product line called Terpology By Dr. Ethan Russo — yes, the legendary cannabis research pioneer, board-certified neurologist, and CEO of CReDO Science, who made the "Entourage Effect" a household concept. Dr. Russo is a True Terpenes Scientific Advisory Board member.
"[Dr. Ethan Russo]'s 25+ years studying the synergistic relationship between cannabinoids and terpenes is incredibly important to the industry and we felt that his expertly formulated and concentrated terpene blends from True Terpene’s new product line Terpology® By Dr. Ethan Russo, would elevate our Caps product," Kim Barron, director of integrated marketing at Cookies, told MERRY JANE in an email. "Cookies elected to use 'Energy' (formulated for energizing and uplifting effects) along with Terpology® 'Calm' (formulated for calm and restfulness). These Terpology® blends are essential to ensuring our Caps products are world-class and provide consumers with the most premium experience."
“Clarity,” the Caps daytime formula, features CBD, CBG, lion’s mane and cordyceps shrooms, and an “energy terpene blend” containing α-Pinene, Limonene, β-Pinene, α-Phellandrene, Terpinolene, Nerolidol, Nerol.
Caps' nighttime formula “Bed Head” has CBD; CBN; a mix of five mushrooms including: reishi, chaga, maitake, shiitake, and turkey tail; and a “calm terpene blend” of Linalool, Limonene, α-Phellandrene, β-Caryophyllene, Citronellol, Nerolidol, Naphthalene, Myrcene, Nerol, Citral, Valencene, and Caryophyllene-oxide.
As we alluded to earlier, Cookies is not the only company to have ventured into the cannabinoid-mushroom market, nor are they the only brand to allege these products can bolster the immune system and enhance cognitive function, or soothe anxiety. The health benefits of medicinal mushrooms have been confirmed in clinical studies. They’ve also been used in Eastern cultures to combat diseases and maintain optimal health for centuries.
It also bears mentioning that research suggests psychedelic fungi have been used by humans since 10,000 BCE. There is evidence of magic mushroom usage in pre-Columbian Mesoamerican communities, Siberia, and ancient Greece.
Mushrooms have had a few banner years in the United States following Denver's move to decriminalize hallucinogenic mushrooms in 2019. Initiated Ordinance 301 turned out to be a watershed moment, and six cities have now decriminalized mushroom possession across the US. Then, Oregon took it up a notch by becoming the first state to decriminalize all drugs and legalize psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy in the 2020 election. A number of other US states are now working to replicate versions of Oregon's new laws.
In California, psychedelic advocacy group Decriminalize California is working to both push shroom decrim legislation and put an initiative before voters in 2022 to legalize psilocybin altogether. The state, along with New York, Virginia, and Washington, has also seen general drug decriminalization legislation introduced. Lawmakers are considering legislation that would widen access to psilocybin in Iowa, Florida, and Connecticut.
All this is going down, while avenues are widening to much-needed scientific studies on psychedelic mushrooms. In 2019, we saw the unveiling of John Hopkins University’s Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness Research and the Medical University of South Carolina has also announced a soon-to-open psychedelic research center. Rumor has it, even NYU is about to throw its hat in the psychedelic research game.
This is all to say, get used to seeing shrooms on shelves — all signs point to the likelihood that we’re about to see a lot more fungus among us.