Ayahuasca Tourism and the Commercialization of Culture

Banisteriopsis caapi, the vine used in ayahuasca brews
Banisteriopsis caapi, the vine used in ayahuasca brews, photo by By CostaPPPR [CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikim]

Used by Indigenous tribes in the Amazon for medicinal purposes for centuries, it’s only in the last 50 years or so that Westerners have come to learn about ayahuasca. La medicina, as it’s often known, is part of a multimillion dollar industry taking hold in South and Central America: plant medicine tourism.