Erowid References Database
Terry M, Trout K.
“Cultivation of peyote: a logical and practical solution to the problem of decreased availability”.
Phytologia. 2013 Nov 1;95(4):314.
The progress toward and impediments to legally protected cultivation of Lophophora williamsii, commonly known as peyote, are elucidated. Recent increases in the ceremonial and medicinal consumption of peyote are inferred from published data and personal observations of the authors. The conservation-based rationale for peyote cultivation is that the predictable shift in the primary mode of production from the current unsustainable harvesting of wild peyote in habitat to regulated cultivation of peyote, either in situ or under glass, would provide alternative supplies of peyote for current and future use by the Native American Church. Such a change in the principal peyote production system from wild-harvesting to cultivation would logically reduce the harvesting pressure on the peyote populations that survive the intense overharvesting inherent in the present system. We summarize current and evolving aspects of the regulatory environment and emerging perceptions regarding the need for U.S. federal regulations that would provide legal certainty for individuals involved in the adoption of cultivation of culturally acceptable peyote on an economically viable commercial scale.
Cultivation seems to be an inevitable undertaking in the future of the NAC if they envision a long-term future for the religious use of peyote. Delaying implementation of cultivation compounds their challenges due to the lag time involved prior to the first large-scale harvest in a sustainable production stream. We estimate that the developmental lag time to full-scale production of culturally acceptable peyote will be on the order of 10 years. The sooner that task can begin, the simpler the future will be for everyone involved, from the level of the average NAC member participating in ceremony to the regulator involved with creating an acceptable regulatory framework.
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