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It’s no secret that American “molly” is of low quality. For any amount of MDMA that even happens to be in the capsules and powders that you take at festivals and at clubs, its purity is likely very questionable. Europe, on the other hand, has a more consistently higher quality pill than the States. In fact, the fact that it still has “pills” rather than capsules and powders is an indication of how Europe’s drug trade has withstood the test of time. But why is that?
A recent article from Inverse suggests branding and “prominent drug crews like the Dutch Partyflock or Q-dance crew” are responsible for keeping quality up. These crews rely on word of mouth and brand recognition to sell their product, and so take quality very seriously. By “changing up their pill presses every few weeks, major producers stay ahead of the fakes, counting on dealers to keep their users up to date with the newest pills.”
Additionally, pre-cursors like safrole and piperonal are harder to come by in the US compared to Europe, says Missi Wooldridge of DanceSafe. The same applies to the methods of pressing pills, leaving US producers to rely on shoddy and ineffective replacements.
“This may be a contributing factor as to why we see more powders or inconsistently shaped pills,” she explains.
The characteristic colors and prints on European tablets are also a method for users to check the quality of their pills beforehand, if they don’t have a test kit (which they absolutely should). The symbols make it easier for users to search online on sites like PillReports or EcstasyData.org, where others submit data and experiences with their drugs for others to use as reference.
Finally, drug laws are more lenient in many European countries, such as Portugal, which has become somewhat of the poster child for drug reform. The Netherlands, too, allow one pill per person … for most of the year. During the week of Amsterdam Dance Event, attendees will be able to carry up to five. More lenient drug laws deter fewer people from making drugs in more dangerous settings and quantities, which somewhat counter-intuitively, promotes higher quality product.
As always, it comes back to the RAVE Act and the chokehold that the DEA puts on American citizens.
As always, it’s important to end articles like these by saying that no drug is inherently safe or without risk, no matter the purity or dosage. Be aware of what you are taking with with test kits and have a sober friend with you if you can.