🍄 #47 - David Bronner - How the perfect storm created a psychedelic renaissance


So yes, David Bronner is our Secret Santa for you this year and our last guest before the Christmas break.

2021 update: The New Health Club will return on January 7th. And I can’t tell you how fortunate we are to have such incredible guests at the beginning of the year! To kickstart the new year, we will be joined by Dr. Gabor Maté the legendary physician, addiction and abuse expert, as well as Dr. Stanislav Grof, the famous psychiatrist, who developed the first therapies with psychedelics and who has done some really important and pioneering work in psychedelic mental wellness.

Also, I need to introduce you to my team, who supports me like no one else.

Please meet the incredible mimosa agency Danilo Sierra, Greta Ferreira and Fiona Laughton, the digital marketing and social media pros! And please meet Ewan Wadell, our science editor, who keeps up with all the latest trends and research in psychedelics and mental health! In times like these, I am very grateful to have these people as my team at The New Health Club. 

But, hey, back to my guest today! David Bronner, the amazing American corporate executive and activist. As the top executive at Dr. Bronner's Magic Soaps, David has positioned himself as the “Chief Cosmic Officer” and is known for his activism around a range of issues, especially fair trade, sustainable agriculture, animal rights, and importantly to us, drug policy reform.

Full disclosure: David's company Dr. Bronner’s have a special personal meaning to me and to The New Health Club, since the company generously sponsored the podcast for most of 2020 and will continue to do so in the new year.

I met David in February this year for the first time in Germany for our first podcast together and  none of us knew at that time that we would experience such an exciting year in psychedelics as the one that we’ve had. 

Dr. Bronner’s as a company has supported the most important decriminalization movements in the US this year such as DC Measure 81–Decriminalize Nature DC, which passed with 76% of the vote and supports the enforcement of laws against natural plant medicines. You might also remember that the chairwoman of Decrim DC Melissa Lavasani was on our show before the US election!

Dr. Bronner’s also supported the Oregon Model, Measure 109 which passed with 56% of the vote and legalises regulated access to psilocybin therapy administered by trained state-licensed facilitators in a therapeutic setting. The model already made a big impact on the worth of stocks from both new psychedelic companies and startups.

Dr. Bronner’s also supported Decrim Chicago and the spokesperson Daniel Carcillo, an incredible ex-NHL player, who treated his depression with psilocybin. Of course, we also had Daniel on our show too, a very emotional episode indeed and please check it out if you have not done so already.

But now back to David! I am thrilled to have him on the show as our last guest for 2020. We talk the exciting year in psychedelics, why the US (and Europe) are so ready for new mental health drugs, we discuss David's German heritage (the Bronner family is originally from Heilbronn), the next level in the upcoming psychedelic world, aaaand we are even joined by David’s dog during our talk! Please enjoy the show and the episode with an awesome dude, one of the most important supporters and trailblazers of the psychedelic renaissance.

A Research Round-Up by Ewan Waddell.

We thought we’d round off this strange year on a note of positivity, by celebrating successful decriminalization movements in 2020. It really has been a great year for psychedelics. The mainstream acceptance of these compounds as medicines has perhaps not been this widespread since the sixties. But this is not just a win for people interested in psychedelics - this is a win for everyone. In the depths of a global mental health crisis, a scientifically backed medicine that might just provide some solutions, offers some welcome hope to all.

Washington DC

In the capital state of the USA, no less, the movement spearheaded by Decriminalize nature DC was successful in rallying 76% of voters to pass the bill which reclassifies natural plant medicines amongst the lowest of law enforcement priorities.


Down Under, a bill passed and will go into effect next year that decriminalizes small amounts of drugs in the country’s capital. Drug users with small amounts (for obvious personal use) will suffer a fine instead of a court order. This is a super positive step in the right direction of redefining addiction as a symptom of a mental health disorder as opposed to criminal behaviour.


Although this one isn’t technically a passed bill, it’s still exciting. A California lawmaker has vowed to take on the burden of decriminalizing psychedelics in the West coast state, with the hope of using Oregon’s decriminalization as a model.

South Dakota

South Dakotans voted in favour of introducing medical marijuana to the state! 


Montana passed a law with 58% of the votes that legalizes adult use of marijuana whilst directing the sales tax revenue to environmental conservation measures. Beautiful.


74% of voters were in favor of legalizing marijuana for medical use for Mississippians with debilitating conditions, such as cancer, epilepsy and ALS.

Our friends over at Dr. Bronner’s actually donated over $1 million to these marijuana campaigns! They hope to make the case that this is a bipartisan issue and prohibition must be ended at a federal level.


The best till last: Oregon voted to pass Measures 109 and 110 which decriminalizes the possession of all drugs in small quantities and legalizes regulated access to psilocybin therapy. Now, they may be the first US state to do this, but if places like Portugal and the Netherlands are anything to go by, then the decriminalization of all drugs and medicalization of psilocybin might be great move forward, and set an example for the rest of the US to follow (as has been so with marijuana legalization).

The success out of Oregon would simply not be possible without the tireless efforts of the activists involved, and the generous donations by philanthropic organisations and individuals (such as Dr. Bronner’s who donated $1 million!).

Looking ahead

No doubt, the success of this year's decriminalization movements will shift the global dialogue on psychedelics in a positive direction and inspire others to take similar action. The future’s looking bright.

Have a great Christmas! We’ll talk next year ;)