In February of 2021, we at Field Trip announced the official opening of our psychedelic research and cultivation facility in Jamaica, now called “Field Trip Natural Products.” The research facility, which is part of our partnership with the University of West Indies, is the world’s first legal research and cultivation facility dedicated exclusively to psilocybin-producing mushrooms and other plant-based psychedelics.
Our work at Field Trip Natural Products is focused on exploring psilocybin-producing fungi rather than psilocybin as an isolated molecule. Much of the research over the past decades has focused on the molecule rather than the organisms that make it naturally. The reality is that most people who are consuming psilocybin are not consuming the isolated molecule. Instead, they’re consuming psychedelic mushrooms that contain thousands of different molecules. It’s crucial, then, that we understand the entire, complex, and extraordinary organism.
Our research efforts start all the way at the beginning, with cultivation. We grow mushrooms from spores and closely monitor every step of the way. The final measure taken is chemical analysis.
We grow a variety of different species. At various stages of maturity, we harvest the fungi and uncover their unique chemical profiles. In accordance with the work of other scientists, we’ve noticed huge chemical differences between different species, different parts of the mushroom, and different stages of growth. The more data we generate, the more we are able to tease apart some of the complexity of these fascinating fungi. Our work continues to show that there is much more to these mushrooms than just psilocybin!
These efforts by our incredible team at Field Trip Natural Products hope to shed light on the complexity of these organisms so that we might better understand their roles in nature and effects on humans. The more we know, the closer we may get to the normalization – and legalization – of these plant medicines.