“Is everything you sell produced sustainably and ethically?”
Everything The Ayni Way offers is harvested/created with close attention to environmental impact, sustainability and fair trade. For example, the only thing in the Ayahuasca pendant/Palo Santo gift boxes that cannot be described this way is the plastic cap on the Palo Santo oil, and that is because we cannot legally ship it out of Ecuador without them. (Note: We are working on that though; stay tuned!)
“How can cutting Ayahuasca vine and Palo Santo be sustainable?”
For every vine that we harvest two new vines are replanted on land dedicated to reforestation. This land is looked after by dedicated stewards to ensure its conservation. Other medicinal plants are also replanted as part of the project. Our Palo Santo comes directly from a conservation project in the Ecuadorian dry forests. Only fallen, dead wood collected off the ground is used. They replant Palo Santo and other indigenous trees for a natural dry forest balance on a 50 hectare tract of land near the Ecuadorian coast.
“How do you source your raw materials?”
We strive to generate awareness of local trade and always seek ethical suppliers to collaborate with. All raw materials come direct from producers and communities to learn the true story of all elements to what we offer. We go to the remotest areas of South America to meet the people involved and see firsthand how everything is processed. This allows us to get a better understanding of the raw materials, where they come from, how they are produced, and what potential labor and environmental issues might arise. We have a very strong commitment to the communities and areas from which we buy our materials.
“Where does the money from sales go?"
It goes into a joint bank account which reimburses costs for production and reforestation, and includes fair wages for the people who worked on our project. Even yours truly gets a few bucks for writing the FAQs. Once we are in the profit zone, we get to do good stuff with the money. We will be documenting our progress on our website and social media channels, so stay tuned!!
“Can I make Ayahuasca brew from the pendant?"
No, absolutely not. This pendant is intended to be a memento, or symbol, of the wearer’s relationship with the vine, but it cannot be used to make the sacred medicine. The brew requires a second plant, Chakruna, to become active, and you would need a LOT more of both to make anything even close to even one dosage’s worth.