- Party pills
Party Pills, also known as "Herbal Highs", "Pep Pills" "Dance Pills" and "Natural Power", is a
colloquialismfor a type of recreational drug whose main ingredient is Benzylpiperazine (BZP). BZP is banned in a few countries, including the USA and Australia, but is available on a more or less restricted basis in many jurisdictions. A range of other piperazine derivatives have also been sold as ingredients in party pills in New Zealand, and some of these brands have subsequently been exported to other countries around the world. Piperazine derivatives sold in this way include BZP, TFMPP, MeOPP, pFPPand several others. mCPP has rarely been sold as a party pill ingredient due to its tendency to cause migraineheadaches. These piperazines are usually mixed with caffeine and a range of vitamins and binders to make party pills.
In countries such as
New Zealandwhere BZP and related piperazines face an imminent ban, there is increasing commercial interest in piperazine free 'party pills' sold under brand names such as "head candy" and "pick and mix" which are purported to produce similar effects with ingredients that will circumvent the ban. Common active ingredients (among many others) include caffeine, theobromine, other stimulant alkaloids, octopamine(a chemical which acts as a neurotransmitter with similar effects to dopamine), blue lotus extract ( Nymphaea caerulea), natural sources of the LSDprecursor and weak psychedelicagent lysergic acid amide(illegal in many countries), passionflower( sedativewhich contains monoamine oxidase inhibitors), Citrus aurantium(contains small amounts of the stimulant synephrine) and geranamine(alkylamine compound found in geraniumoil).
Some ingredients are not revealed by some manufacturers, and some products have been released containing compounds such as
methylone, BK-MBDBand Diphenyl prolinolbefore being subsequently withdrawn following threats of legal action from the government.
News and legality
Party pills and their legal status are often in the news. Matt Bowden of Stargate International, one of the original distributors of such pillsFact|date=June 2007 and now an industry spokesperson, is regularly interviewed when issues involving party pills arise in the public arena. At one stage Prime television news presenter Alison Mau went so far as to test the effects of certain party pills. A clinical trial by ClubStargate for a pill named Ease was suspended because it contained
methylone, which was claimed by the Ministry of Health to fall under New Zealand controlled drug analogue laws (although this was never proven in court).
New Zealand has classified party pills as a "Restricted Substance" by the Misuse of Drugs Act and restricted to those over 18 years. [PDFlink| [http://www.stanz.org.nz/images/ASSENT81.PDF Misuse of Drugs Amendment Act 2005] |81.3 KiB ] . For more on the legal issues posed by party pills, see benzylpiperazine.
In late June 2007, BZP was classed as a Class D in New Zealand drug and its availability was banned by a law passed on
13 March 2008, with a six month amnesty period. [cite news|url=http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/1/story.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10498034|title=Party pills banned|publisher= The New Zealand Herald|date= 13 March 2008] As a result, many critics believe this will result in handing back power to organized crime, as young people will revert to the illegal drug MDMA, otherwise known as ecstasy. Critics claim the two most damaging drugs in terms of self harm, alcohol and tobacco, are still legal because it is engrained too deep in society to ban. [http://xtramsn.co.nz/news/0,,11964-6527824,00.html ]
*Harmonic Party Pill packaging, Evolvepills, Auckland, 2006
* [http://www.raverquest.com/ Party Pills]
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