herald

Wednesday 20 September 2017

'Legal high' joints still on sale in head shops

THIS 'pre-rolled' Salvia drug is still available from one of Temple Bar's busiest head shops.

The drug, which is seen as a cannabis substitute, was one of the few substances still available for users eager to obtain a 'legal high' have been buying the controversial substances in bulk since the new legislation was brought in.

The ingredients in Salvia and other cannabis-like drug Neder Gold, are not covered under the Government ban and still can be legally sold.

Although neither products contain traces of cannabis, they mimic its effects and users have described the drug as offering a similar effect to magic mushrooms.



SUBSTITUTES

The Dublin Head Store in Temple Bar was booming with customers yesterday, all eager to scoop up the ingredients for a 'legal high' while they still remained legal.

An employee said customers had been "buying out everything we have", since the new legislation was brought in on Tuesday.

He did not know if they would be receiving another shipment of stock due to the new restrictions in place, or what products the shipment would contain.

The 'pre-rolled' version of Salvia can be smoked, but the pure version sold in a packet, which was completely sold out, can be used in tea or smoked.

On Wednesday night, customers queued to buy the cannabis substitutes. Yesterday, the store was nearly full.

The cheap prices also attract customers -- Salvia only costs €3 for one joint.

However, Salvia does come with a health warning. The tobacco-free substance warns users not to smoke "when on medication, driving, working or pregnant".



GOLD

Its ingredients include natural substances such as "Mexican Salvia sage and strawberry aroma".

A three-gramme packet of similar product Neder Gold costs around €25.

The packet claims to contain "a blend of herbs and herbal extracts including Damian, Wild Dagga, Kanna, Leonurus, Sibirius and Kratom".

Manufacturers explain that a packet of Neder Gold can be "smoked in a joint or a pipe or water bong".

It is not clear if these herbal products will be banned under the new Criminal Law (Psychoactive Substances) Bill 2010. The Bill will put onus on shop owners to prove they are not selling illegal products, so they cannot get round bans by using new chemical compounds.

cmcbride@herald.ie

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