What are psychedelic truffles?

Psychedelic truffles, also known as truffles containing psilocybin, are a class of psychoactive fungus containing the psychedelic molecules psilocybin and psilocin. They are related to the more well-known psychedelic, "magic" mushrooms. While they both belong to the same species of psychoactive fungi, truffles are simply at a different stage of fungal development than mushrooms. Truffles are a dormant form of fungus, known as sclerotia, that store food reserves in a hardened mass until the environment is suitable for the growth of mushrooms.

Truffles containing psilocybin are the transformational substances used at the Synthesis retreat in Amsterdam, due to their legal status and powerful psychedelic effects.

Non-psychedelic truffles

Not all truffles are psychedelic. Of the hundreds of species of fungi that produce truffles, fewer than a dozen also have psychedelic properties.

Some non-psychoactive truffles are a culinary delicacy: but the few species that are actually tasty are also very hard to farm, and have to be searched for in the wild. Often pigs or dogs are used to sniff them out, and a large truffle can sell for thousands of dollars.

Psychedelic truffles are easier to grow and harvest than culinary truffles. Unlike culinary truffles, which are delicate and require very specific environmental conditions to grow, psychedelic truffles can be farmed and harvested in artificial environments.

Psychoactive truffles

Several species of truffles are psychoactive. That is, they contain the psychoactive molecule psilocybin. These psychoactive truffles are known as magic truffles, or psychedelic truffles. The known species of psychoactive truffles include Psilocybe tampanensis, Psilocybe mexicana, Psilocybe atlantis and Psilocybe galindoii.

Are truffles containing psilocybin legal?

In the Netherlands, mushrooms containing psilocybin have been illegal since 2007. However, the government only outlawed the mature mushroom stage of psychedelic fungi, meaning that truffles containing psilocybin are still legal to buy and consume.

Since then, fresh and dried magic truffles have been sold in head shops across the country. Truffles are especially popular in Amsterdam, and a number of legal psychedelic retreats near the city (including Synthesis) have adopted these truffles as the substance of choice for transformational experiences.

Why choose truffles?

Aside from the legality of truffles (which is important for obvious reasons), there are additional benefits for Synthesis to have chosen them as the ideal psychedelic for a retreat.

Psychedelic truffles (when dried) contain a lower concentration of psilocybin than dried magic mushrooms, but certainly enough to induce a profound psychedelic experience.

People often report that the psychedelic experience is a less intense, shorter-lasting experience than the magic mushrooms trip – but this is likely due to the fact that truffles are manufactured more carefully, and packaged with reliable dosage information. By comparison, magic mushrooms are often acquired from unreliable sources, and as such people are likely to take an unknown dose. This advantage of the legal truffle market in the Netherlands is perfect for Synthesis; providing a reliable and controlled dose, which is crucial to the comfort of our guests.

One downside of the legal truffle market is that truffles can be more expensive to purchase than mushrooms containing psilocybin. However, you’re paying for peace of mind, knowing that the truffles have come from dedicated manufacturers and are dosed accurately.

Where are truffles found?

The only place you can legally purchase fresh or dried truffles is the Netherlands.

Although some companies will ship psychedelic truffles to other countries, the legality of this is not certain. If you live in a country where mushrooms are illegal, you could potentially be prosecuted for purchasing, consuming, or growing truffles too.

Growing your own truffles from growing kits or using mushroom spores is possible. The harvesting process is simpler than that of mushrooms, although it may require more patience; it can take months for the truffles to reach their full size.

Both psychedelic truffles and mushrooms are also known to grow in the wild in most countries with a suitable climate. Anywhere with damp, marshy woodland is a good bet; but any truffle hunter should be able to identify poisonous species of fungus as well as psilocybin-containing species.

How are truffles grown?

Much like the process of growing pychedelic mushrooms, truffles can be grown in artificial environments. The technique involves growing psychedelic mushroom spores in a damp, humid, sterile environment, without allowing the environmental conditions to become favorable for full mushroom growth. This way, the fungi remains in the truffle stage and is harvested when it reaches its largest possible size. Sometimes, this takes months.

Truffles are farmed by a variety of suppliers in the Netherlands, but generally, the supplier will provide information about their farming technique and the psilocybin content of the fully-grown truffles.

Synthesis may well be an ideal environment to consume psychedelic truffles, especially if it’s your first time. They are sourced from a trusted Amsterdam vendor, and every part of the process is legal. The dosage can be carefully selected to match the kind of experience you’re looking for, and you will be surrounded by support and guidance throughout the retreat.

What is the psychedelic experience like?

Since these truffles contain exactly the same active ingredients as mushrooms (mainly psilocybin), the quality of the truffle experience is reported to be very similar.

Psychedelic truffles can be ingested in various ways. They can be eaten fresh, brewed into a tea, or dried truffles can be packed into capsules. At Synthesis, truffles are ingested as a ginger-infused tea; a relatively pleasant administration, which helps to mask the strong, often earthy magic truffles taste. The ginger in the magic truffles tea also helps to settle the stomach, as some people can experience nausea from truffles containing psilocybin. The truffle tea also makes it convenient for participants to re-dose if required; a second cup can be taken during the session.

Effects can be intense. Users describe profound changes in perception, including bodily sensations, deep emotional insights and mystical experiences. Some people reach a new understanding of their inner life or their outer world during the experience itself; for others, these individualized insights dawn or develop later, with the aid of reinterpretation and integration techniques.

During a psychedelic journey, rushes of emotion are particularly common, including euphoria and a sense of total immersion in your surroundings. These are often accompanied by visual changes; the boundaries between shapes may blur, the air may take on a substantial, hazy quality. Surfaces may develop swirling patterns. Your thoughts may surprise you; drawing connections between seemingly disparate ideas, or spinning out into personal epiphanies. Your sense of self may even dissolve altogether as you become one with your surroundings: a process known as ego-dissolution.

The colors you see may be brighter, more intense, or change completely. Characters that are encountered in this altered state of consciousness may morph, take on new significances or identities; objects may feel different to touch. You may be drawn towards exploring the outdoors; the beauty of plants and flowers can become mesmeric.

The psychedelic trip can last between four to eight hours, depending on the dose and the individual’s sensitivity. The profound nature of the experience is amplified by the carefully crafted environment at Synthesis, guiding participants through a journey that will stay with them for long after the retreat is over.

Synthesis: the retreat

Truffles containing psilocybin are still a relative newcomer to the psychedelic world. But they’re quickly emerging as a safe and legal way to experience the benefits of psychedelics. If you’re interested in experiencing psychedelics in Amsterdam, Synthesis could be the best option for you.

Apply now to join a retreat and go on your own psychedelic journey!