Published on April 5th, 2023 | by Dr. Jerry Doby0
Bliss Mushrooms Strives for Equity and Inclusion in Psychedelics Industry to Avoid Replicating Cannabis Industry’s Lack of Diversity
Oakland Bliss, a psychedelics company in Oakland, California, is taking a proactive approach to ensure that the lack of diversity that currently exists in the cannabis industry is not replicated in the psychedelics industry. The company is looking to be a leader in ensuring that the emerging sector is diverse and inclusive.
The psychedelics industry is still in its early stages and the lack of racial diversity is a strong indication that the sector is replicating the same systemic problems around accessibility and diversity that have long plagued the fields of medicine and mental health. A 2021 MJBizDaily survey revealed that between 2019 and 2021, minority ownership in the cannabis industry dropped from 28% to 13.1%, and women ownership dropped from 36.8% to 22.1%. About 80% of marijuana business owners and founders identify as White, according to a 2017 survey by Marijuana Business Daily. Only 5.7% of these entrepreneurs are Hispanic or Latino, and 4.3% are Black.
According to an analysis by Insider, White men make up 70% of top executives at the 14 largest cannabis companies, while Black executives make up only 7% of the cannabis C-suite. This lack of diversity is further exacerbated by the fact that the main sources of funding for psychedelic and cannabis companies are wealthy individuals, family offices, and private-equity and venture-capital firms that historically people of color do not have access to.
In contrast, indigenous cultures have worked with psychedelics for thousands of years. From Bwiti practitioners in Africa who take Iboga to the people of the Amazon basin who take Ayahuasca. Psychedelic research has lacked inclusion of many vulnerable populations, including Black, Indigenous, and People of Color, sexual minorities, military veterans, and non‐English speaking people. Current research efforts are underway by some researchers to shift this tide of exclusion.
Oakland Bliss is striving to ensure that the emerging psychedelics sector does not follow the same path as the cannabis industry. The company recognizes that this lack of diversity casts an ugly shadow over legal cannabis and wants to avoid the same mistake. “We want to create a psychedelic industry that is equitable and inclusive and that uplifts diverse voices and perspectives,” said a representative from Oakland Bliss.
The company is aiming to increase diversity and inclusivity in the emerging sector by taking a proactive approach to recruit and mentor underrepresented groups. Additionally, the company is seeking to partner with organizations that are working towards equity and inclusion.
“We’re not just looking to make money in this industry,” said a spokesperson for the company. “We want to create a sustainable and equitable model that empowers individuals and communities.” Oakland Bliss is committed to making sure that the psychedelics industry recognizes and incorporates the knowledge and wisdom of indigenous communities and that the industry is accessible to all.
The company is aware that the foundations for psychedelic medicine lay in indigenous healing practices, and they believe that ethnic minorities need to be supported and highlighted in the mainstream narrative. “We want to ensure that marginalized communities who may be interested in using these sacred medicines for their own healing have access to them,” the representative added in.
Oakland Bliss is committed to making sure that diversity and inclusion are at the forefront of their business model. “We believe that diversity is not only a moral imperative but also a competitive advantage,” said the representative. “By embracing diversity, we can foster creativity, innovation, and a broader understanding of the needs and wants of different communities.”
About Oakland Bliss/Bliss Mushrooms
Bliss Mushrooms is a luxury psychedelic company that is owned and operated in Oakland. They provide ultra-high quality psilocybin products that are vegan, gluten-free, Non-GMO and Fairtrade, making them stand out in the relatively new psychedelic industry. Bliss Mushrooms has become one of the fastest-growing brands in psychedelics due to their cohesive body of work and consistent lab testing of their products. They were the first and only US-based psychedelic company to consistently lab test their products, implementing tracking batch and lot numbers and a Universal Product Code (UPC) for their products. They also regularly participate in community events such as toy drives, food drives, neighbourhood clean-ups, and donating personal care supplies to homeless encampments throughout the city of Oakland.
For more information please visit, https://blissmushrooms.