The criteria of sustainability also applies to ayahuasca, the Amazonian plant brew. It is made with two different species, a bush (Psychotria viridis) and a vine (Banisteriopsis caapi). Both plants are originally only found in the Amazon rainforest. Since ayahuasca has become increasingly popular in the West the growing demand has put stress on the native habitat. Both plants can be cultivated and the Brazillian ayahuasca churches usually have their own plantations. But especially when it comes to ayahuasca for the foreign market, a lot of illegal activities are involved such as wild harvesting and the cutting down of trees that the vine is growing on. To have certainty that you are not contributing to the degradation of the rainforest you should know where your ayahuasca is coming from, who produced it and in what way. You could also try to cultivate it at home.
Interview with Thiago Martins e Silva
Thiago is forest engineer, permaculture designer and has worked in several governmental environmental projects in the State of Acre in Brazil. He accompanied the resolution CEMACT / CFE № 004/2010, which regulates the logging, collection and transport of the species Banisteriopsis caapi and Psychotria viridis. He is a Criminal Expert of the Civil Police and of the DFNSP. Thiago is actively engaged in the reforestation and sustainability of the two plant species that are used to cook the Ayahuasca tea.