MONTREAL -- Police and health officials have issued a health warning to the drug-using public about new synthetic drugs on the streets in Montreal.

They say the manmade drug Fentanyl Desmethyl is very powerful -- about 40 times stronger than heroin, and 80 times stronger than morphine.

Marc Riopel of the Montreal police department said they seized 300,000 of pills from a lab in Pointe-Saint-Charles on April 25 after a four-month investigation called “Projet Silencieux.” Along with the pills, enough chemical ingredients were seized to manufacture 3 million more.

Among the pills seized were fake Viagra, Cialis, crystal meth, steroids and ecstasy, along with the new discovery.

“For the first time in Canada we seized Fentanyl Desmythl, and it's a really strong drug that was composed in the pill,” explained Riopel. “It's alarming in Canada, for sure.”

The drugs were so potent that officers who brought samples to a lab fell ill – even while wearing masks and gloves – with one needing to be hospitalized with heart trouble.

In a hospital setting, Fentanyl is used as a potent painkiller, typically for women in labour or those having colonoscopies.

Ingesting the Fentanyl derivative could be lethal, said Riopel.

Riopel said the criminal lab had equipment to produce pills with a variety of looks and brands -- both ridiculous and apparently legitimate looking -- geared toward a young, marketing-obsessed market.

“From Facebook to Tim Hortons to the Montreal Canadiens to luxury cars and all logos that are attractive to young people on the streets,” he said.

They also seized paint thinner and acrylic paint, which would have been used to coat the pills in attractive colours.

"We've seized 49 punches that could make a signature on each pill. They could produce at least one pill a second," said Riopel.

The pills are sold online, on the street and have been exported to the United States.

“They used a microwave. They changed the interior so that it could pass as a normal shipping (container), through UPS or Purolator,” said Riopel.

So far two men have been charged with drug trafficking. The investigation is ongoing.

Meantime, Barbara Victor, the clinical director of social services agency Agence Ometz said it’s worrying because pill taking has lost some of its stigma, and is often seen as “clean.”

“These drugs are very dangerous,” said Victor. “They're not acceptable, so I think we have to talk to kids about why we take pills, and when we take pills, and what pills should we be skeptical of.”