Travelled all the way to the Amazon in search for the magic potion ayahuasca? Then you don’t want to be misled by a fake shaman! Likewise, increased global demand of the sacred vine shouldn’t lead to over-harvesting and deforestation.
With these ideas in mind this year the Ethnobotanical Stewardship Council (ESC) was established. Supported by sister organisations ICEERS, MAPS and PRISM, ESC’s main aim is ‘to ensure the sustainable and safe use of ethnobotanical plants and to enrich the communities who work with them.’
Their first large project is called the ‘Ayahuasca Dialogues’, as the situation around this ethnobotanical plant is most pressing. The dialogues are a large scale project in which all possible stakeholders (e.g. indigenous practitioners, healers, policy-makers, scientists, centre owners and tourists) are approached and asked to collaborate on the formulation of basic guidelines for safe and sustainable ayahuasca use.
Want to support the ESC? They recently launched a crowdfunding campaign. With a donation of $ 20 an ayahuasca vine (Banisteriopsis Caapi) will be planted in a fair-trade and sustainable ayahuasca farm. There are also many other donation possibilities.