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“Several unwell” from taking ‘Pharaoh’ pills sold as MDMA at Parklife

Written by on 17th September 2021

"Several unwell" from taking 'Pharaoh' pills sold as MDMA at Parklife

Different coloured “Pharoah” shaped pills sold as MDMA, caused “several” people to fall ill at Parklife Festival which took place in Heaton Park, Manchester this weekend.

A number of people became unwell during the Parklife festival and were treated by event medics, according to the North West Ambulance Service.

According to a drug testing organisation, the tablets’ contents have been “connected to medical occurrences in UK festivals and nightlife establishments.”

The pills are believed to contain other substances but were sold as MDMA. Following the news of the festival’s drug-related illnesses, drug safety organisations released findings concerning pills they claim were distributed at Parklife.

On the back of the pills the words “WARNING: 240mg” are printed.

The Loop tested the brown, blue and pink Pharoah pills all sold as MDMA and found that the brown pill contains MDMA, the blue pill contains 4-CMC and the pink pill contains eutylone.

According to an infographic shared on Twitter made by The Loop, 4-CMC is a cathinone with “less euphoria but more stimulant effects” than MDMA. Eutylone is a potent cathinone with “negative effects” such as paranoia, anxiety, excessive stimulation and “can lead to psychosis”.

The infographic has advised those who want to take substances at festivals such as Parklife to “go slow, stay low”.

Publishing a picture of the pill, The Loop cautioned users, saying “similar pills tested on the same day, at the same festival” had different contents, including ingredients “linked to medical incidents in UK festivals and nightlife venues”.

Drug harm reduction organisation Volteface shared this post and also warned drug users to take caution.

Ant Lehane, a spokesperson from Volteface, told Mixmag:

“The Loop’s findings demonstrate that no pill can be assumed to be safe. Volteface recently worked on a story where a dealer had received a kilogram of mis-sold MDMA which actually turned out to be 4CMC – with this equating to around 10,000 doses, it is easy to see how the market can become flooded with adulterated substances.”

“As per advice from harm reduction organisations, it is recommended that people test their substances using reagent kits which can easily be bought online. This does not guarantee safety though, so always ensure that you go slow and start low, do not mix substances, and always let a friend know what you have taken.”

You can get more information on drug safety and testing on The Loop’s website, they have also provided us with a guide on how to approach ecstasy safely below.