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Comments From Matt Bowden

By John Clarke

Aroma Smoking MixtureSince George Lamb couldn’t invest­ig­ate his way out of a paper bag, I got in touch with Matt Bowden, the guy behind BZP, for a bit more of an in-depth com­ment­ary. If you never watched Can I Get High Legally?, now would be a good time to check it out. Matt is inter­viewed towards the end, but is barely given the chance to speak. Actu­ally, he only agreed to speak to them on the con­di­tion that they mention his Aroma product and Club Star­gate website, where you can earn money by getting your mates to buy stuff. I know since it’s the BBC that they couldn’t actu­ally mention these things, but then why did they agree to it? That’s just not nice.

So, anyway, here’s what Matt has to say:

My points all simply come back to quoting proven research. Sure, BZP has risks. We ana­lysed the risk after 10 million expos­ures in a country small enough that you can contact every hos­pital and A & D clinic to look for adverse events related to the ten million expos­ures (26 million pills con­sumed over 8.5 years) and learned that it was not caus­at­ive in any repor­ted deaths or sig­ni­fic­ant lasting injur­ies and had not con­trib­uted to the burden on the alcohol and drug treat­ment indus­tries. Nobody in the country had com­plained any­where of addic­tion to the drug.

Nobody had ever been admit­ted to hos­pital or even presen­ted at an emer­gency depart­ment who had fol­lowed the instruc­tions on the packet and in every case where there was a hos­pital admis­sion, the subject had well over the legal alcohol limit (for driving) as well. In some cases where seizures were repor­ted they were up to 15 times over the alcohol limit! In other words they were in very poor shape even without the BZP.

There was one fatal­ity which involved BZP but on a New Years Eve and it was com­bined with heroic doses of ecstasy, LSD and again mammoth quant­it­ies of alcohol. BZP was not con­sidered by the medical exam­iners on the night to be caus­at­ive.

It is not com­pletely safe, but then neither is getting out of bed in the morning. It is con­sidered risky to take with ecstasy and/​or large amounts of alcohol, but if taken as dir­ec­ted by sens­ible man­u­fac­tur­ers, the risks are lower than many other normal every­day human activ­it­ies such as a trip to the beach, driving in heavy traffic or a pas­sen­ger flight in a 747.

The risks are lower than activ­it­ies such as surgery in a public hos­pital, a trip to the doctor, or, as our then-Prime Min­is­ter sug­ges­ted young people do instead of taking party pills, a walk in one of our national parks, where poorly exper­i­enced trampers freeze to their deaths every year!

Some excel­lent facts and figures there. It’s just a shame I had to be the one to report them.

Fuck you, George Lamb..

2 Responses to Comments From Matt Bowden

  1. reece brown says:

    what a load of tripe! There were loads of people admit­ted to A&E in NZ because of BZP — this guy pushes BZP as a ‘natural’ high but to be honest its a lot more psychot­ic­ally dan­ger­ous than MDMA — espe­cially the MCPP vari­et­ies of piperz­ines

  2. mattbowden says:


    Nice to meet you, thanks for taking the time to comment.

    Unsure if you’ve clearly read what I said on the page above but to clarify my pos­i­tion and give you some more info: BZP is syn­thetic and not nat­ur­ally occur­ring; there were A&E present­a­tions in NZ but the major­ity of these people who presen­ted to A&E in NZ were not ADMIT­TED to hos­pital, most were not serious cases, and none of the recor­ded cases had fol­lowed our dosage instruc­tions In many cases the treat­ment provided was “verbal reas­sur­ance.” There was a thor­ough ana­lysis carried out of all avail­able hos­pital records which you can read about at the link below;

    As far as I know there is no evid­ence of neur­o­tox­icity asso­ci­ated with BZP studies, have been carried out in this area, when last I checked on them they were showing BZP users brains as being essen­tially normal.

    meta-chlorophenylpiperazine (mCPP) is a dif­fer­ent com­pound to BZP, however I am not aware of any cases of mCPP induced psy­chosis or com­par­at­ive studies with MDMA. I think methamphet­am­ine would be a better drug to compare BZP to if a com­par­ison were made.

    If you are inter­ested in reading more detail on a number of these state­ments there is a risk ana­lysis and research summary on BZP here http://​www​.mattbowden​.com/​P​B​S​T​-​R​A​-​F​i​n​a​l​-​s​m​a​l​l​e​r​.​pdf

    I don’t think it is fair comment to suggest in a public forum that I “push” or oth­er­wise present BZP as a “natural” high, I worked hard to correct this mis­con­cep­tion over a number of years, perhaps you have con­fused me with some­body else, if you can back up your state­ments feel free to do so here.

    I under­stand that the BZP effect is not the most sought after drug effect and that MDMA is a pre­ferred drug but I am com­fort­able with the way that we have presen­ted its safety profile.



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