The variety of Mexican beans is also disappearing from family kitchens: of the 150 types of beans in the world, Mexico has 50 and, of them, only less than a dozen are cooked in the homes of the country, warned the Global Fund for Nature (WWF)
Only four out of 10 types of green chili peppers consumed in Mexico are produced by the country and the remaining, that is, 60% of them, come from China, said the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).
The WWF, in a press conference, stressed that the loss of national products affects ingredients whose center of origin and domestication is in Mexico, such as green peppers.
But also other products, such as the variety of Mexican beans, are disappearing from family kitchens. Of the 150 types of beans in the world, Mexico has 50 and, of them, only less than a dozen are cooked in the country’s homes.
“Mexico has huge biodiversity that unfortunately we are losing. This has multiple causes but, perhaps, the most important is ignorance, because we ignore the ingredients that are produced in our country,” said chef Ricardo Muñoz Zurita.
“In local markets of Oaxaca or Yucatan we see products with strangeness, we think they have been brought from other places and, since we do not know what they are, we do not cook them. That is very serious. We must revalue, rediscover our entire community kitchen, our kitchen based on the fundamentals of corn, “he added.
For chef Yuri de Gortari, Mexican food has ” its ritual and festive sense, its link with history and its powerful union with the diverse expressions of the cultural and artistic heritage of Mexico.” “Thus our gastronomy is a mosaic, a melting pot of cultural traditions that we must value and preserve,” he said.
Meanwhile, Sonia Ortiz stressed that “to conserve the different species that we have in Mexico, we must know them, buy them, learn to cook them .”If we use them, they will continue to be cultivated and thus we protect them. We are disconnected from food, we don’t know where they come from
Therefore, Ortiz said that ” we must reconnect with the origin of our food. We must know how to sow and know what it costs to value the ingredients.”
The WWF proposal
For the reasons stated, the WWF launched a campaign in Mexico to ” promote the conservation of fundamental ingredients of our gastronomy that are threatened and put at risk dishes highly valued by Mexicans.”
This includes varieties of chili peppers, beans, pumpkins and tomatoes, and stews such as mole and chili in nogada, which could disappear, among other reasons, “due to changes in consumption habits, difficulties in their cultivation, change climate and the invasion of foreign products. “
The campaign, called “Dale Chamba”, has the support of traditional cooks, renowned chefs and gastronomic schools in Mexico, who for three months will promote the use of ingredients at risk or forgotten and that are a substantial part of emblematic dishes of the country.
“At present, 90% of our diet is based on 15 species of vegetables and 8 of animals. This implies a loss for the countryside, gastronomy and our culture since it is known that biodiversity, food, art, and the clothes are closely linked, “said Jorge Rickards, general director of WWF Mexico.
“In Mexico, there are 364 language groups and this refers to at least 364 culinary variants. Let’s work to preserve them,” Rickards added.
“We want Mexicans to become aware of the value of biodiversity in our gastronomy, go to the markets and rediscover species that we have forgotten, ” said Ana Laura de la Torre, spokeswoman for the campaign.
“This is a call to open our eyes and palates to fundamental ingredients of Mexican cuisine that we have stopped using or are at risk and that we should not lose,” he added.
The participating gastronomy schools are: Centro de Estudios Superiores de San Ángel, Higher College of Gastronomy, University of the Cloister of Sor Juana, Universidad Panamericana and Universidad del Valle de México.
Source: elagricultor.mx, infobae
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