Eccentric soap producer Dr Bronner’s has reportedly donated $5m to drug research charity Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), in order to bolster the organization’s attempts to have the drug recognized and fully researched by the FDA.
The company’s CEO David Bronner said in a statement:
“There is tremendous suffering and pain that the responsible integration of MDMA for treatment-resistant PTSD will alleviate and heal. To help inspire our allies to close the funding gap, my family has pledged $1 million a year for five years – $5 million total – by far our largest gift to an NGO partner to date. In part, we were inspired by the incredible example of Ashawna Hailey, former MAPS Board member, who gave MAPS $5 million when she died in 2011.”
Bronner himself is a known psychonaut and passionate Burner, and since he became CEO (Cosmic Engagement Officer) of the company that his father Emanuel Bronner—who started Dr. Bronner’s after escaping from a mental institution in Illinois—ran until his death in 1997, has increased revenue to $96m a year, while also becoming one of marijuana, LSD and now MDMA’s most vocal activists.
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Dr. Bronner’s product is known for its fabulously tingly suds and for labels that read like the earnest ramblings of a Haight-Ashbury street preacher, and has become an increasing presence in the West Coast transformational scene. A few years ago they brought an enormous art car bath tub to Lighting in a Bottle to lather up the dusty festival goes with some organic, fair trade castile oil, and their natural process and pledge to donate half of all profits to aligned causes makes them exemplary examples of what they call “constructive capitalism”.