Indigenous, Local And Traditional Knowledge

The objective of this session is to present the work carried out in various regions of the country, in very diverse ecosystems. The intraregional and intracommunity differences of the home gardens of each region are shown, the local foods and consumption patterns of different cultural groups are identified. Traditional local knowledge in home gardens is shown as local production systems, enrichment of crops and diets. The results obtained in the research work are presented, carried out by groups of academics and civil society organizations to solve the problem of production, supply, processing and distribution of healthy, safe and nutritious food to solve specific problems of each community in the region. that was worked. The role of women in the construction of gardens, preparation of recipes, recovery of local products and the empowerment of women in food production processes is highlighted.


María de Jesús Ordóñez Díaz, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM), Mexico

Sandra Montes Carrillo, Dirección Estatal de Pueblos Originarios de Baja California, Mexico
Carolina Gutiérrez Sánchez, Universidad Autónoma de Baja California, Mexico

Promotion of the Kumiai culture of a native community of San Jose de la Zorra, Baja California, Mexico
The native groups of the Baja California region in northwest of México, have managed local ecosystems for thousands of years, they create cooperative traditional food systems related to the ways of feeding and use of natural resources from the desert, sierra, valley and coast. However, today, there are only a few people with living memories of traditional foods, mostly women who are related to providing food in the present days. The entry of industrialized food into the community context has displaced processes and forms of food constructed as traditional that are shown to be healthier (gathered, hunted or produced locally). In this sense, it is important to value this traditional knowledge of food and support the connection with natural resources implicit in the process, which are decisive for the sustainability of their environments. At present, young people and women from the communities recognized a lack of documentation of the knowledge and a need for tangible action for their food heritage and food system. This research focuses on the native Kumiai community of San José de la Zorra, one of the seven communities in Baja California. In the research process, qualitative methods were applied to different people from the community who collaborate later in the participatory action process. The results in this research was a proposal of a "Living Community Cookbook: traditional recipes with biocultural value". Group of women from the Kumiai Community, San José de la Zorra, focused on the recovery of knowledge about food and natural resources whose product will be a live cookbook.


Carolina Gutiérrez Sánchez, Universidad Autónoma de Baja California, Mexico

The kitchen as a platform for creative and collaborative development with the socio-ecosystem.
It is important to rethink what type of gastronomy and food system we are living, then, to speak of gastronomy is to speak of restoration, wisdom and community, a community that generates ties with those who produce, those who transform, those who consume and those who dream. During the pandemic, we have reconfigured our food cultures, and with it, many practices and daily lives around food have been reinvented. We focus the attention in Ensenada Baja California, which is a state known for his wine production and the big diversity of ingredients of great quality, that why this is part of one of the Creative Gastronomy Cities from UNESCO. We focus to explore the food system in a privileged geographical area for its climate and landscape diversity; the exploration takes part in a kitchen called Shawii, located on a ranch at the countryside of Ensenada. This kitchen provide the opportunity to reunite all kind of people to the table, because is a space to connect, to taste warm food and enjoy the scenery of the landscapes from Baja California. We use techniques that respect the flavor and essence of the ingredient; we use products from neighboring farms, trying to promote a collaborative economy with local producers. We apply knowledge from our past and present relations to prepare and create our narratives around the origin of the ingredients. Tries to share that food as part of a sustainable system and to keep knowledge, culture, nature and innovation in balance.


Alicia Gutierrez Valenzuela, Institucion Emanual Arturo, IAP, Mexico

Seven years of work in the family gardens project in San Ignacio Rio Muerto, Sonora, México
The experience of 7 years of work carried out in the IAP Emanuel Arturo, in the municipality of San Ignacio Río Muerto de Sonora, Mexico promoting community assistance and development is presented, the latter in the strategic axis of Food, a program of Vegetable Gardens was developed backyards in which training has been given for families to establish, become aware and sensitize about the situation of the use of agrochemicals; Training is provided to produce organic fertilizers and repellants with very good results in 250 low-income families who have presented changes in their eating habits, generate income with the sale of surpluses, improve their health, get sick less and above all know that their food they are healthy because their vegetables are chemical free. Of the 250 families benefiting from vegetable gardens, 3 base groups generated 5 micro-businesses for the sale of organic products. They seek to establish a social enterprise that sells organic products, such as vegetables, fertilizers and repellants; Work is being done so that 200 families achieve their food security through family gardens and the establishment of a poultry farm to supplement their diet with animal protein such as chicken meat and eggs, aspects that have supported during the Covid 19 pandemic that has prevented families from leaving their communities. Those involved acquired knowledge about the care and handling of poultry; regulation and phytosanitary regulations for poultry; they have improved their family finances; the children consume more vegetables, less junk products and have shared knowledge with other people from different villages.


Diego Hernández-Muciño, UNAM, Mexico

Traditional home gardens as a tool for guaranteeing food security and for forest landscape restoration: the case of Me’Phaa indigenous community in Mexico
The Forest Landscape Restoration (FLR) place the human communities in the center of crucial processes to reconciling food production with the social resilience and biodiversity conservation. Among the strategies proposed by FLR, the establishment and rehab of agroforestry systems is especially interesting. Home gardens (HG) are agroforestry systems recognized since pre-Columbian period play an important ecological, economic and social function in rural areas. Studies about HG have been developed in the southeast of the country where the Maya culture domain, whereas the HG of other regions and ethnic group are less well known. “La Montaña” is a rural and indigenous region in the south of Mexico (Guerrero state), considered one of the poorest in the country and with high levels of degradation of natural resources. In 2014 the Indigenous Non-Governmental Organization (INGO) Xuajin Me´Phaa started the project: “Mbaá Yuskha: Cultural Me´Phaa home gardens”, which consisted in the restoration of approximately 200 HG of indigenous families belonging to the ethnic group me’phaa. In partnership, The Regional Multidisciplinary Research Center of the UNAM have worked in projects about socioecological aspects of the HG in the region. The most relevant processes and results from INGO and academic interventions, in terms of HG biodiversity and productivity, and the role of HG to improve the landscape connectivity, food security and socioecological resilience in the communities. The main objective is increase knowledge about HG from La Montaña region and highlight the HG potential as FLR strategy by linking cultural and social values with the sustainability of societies and ecosystems.


Adriana Caballero Roque, Universidad de Ciencias y Artes de Chiapas (UNICACH), Mexico

Varied diet in Copainalá Chiapas with vegetables from the family garden
Nutritional Food Security has been defined as a state in which all people have, in a timely and permanent manner, physical, economic and social access to the food they need, in quantity and quality, for its proper consumption and biological use, guaranteeing them a general welfare state that contributes to the achievement of their development (PESA, 2011). In rural communities, in many cases families do not have availability and physical access to food, causing a poorly varied diet and alterations in family health. The food of the families of the José María Morelos y Pavón locality of the municipality of Copainalá Chiapas is linked to agriculture itself, they consume food grown in the orchards. The present research aims to promote the cultivation and consumption of vegetables for a varied diet through the use of home gardens supplemented with eight types of vegetable seeds (chard, broccoli, coriander, cabbage, tomato, lettuce, radish and carrot) and three aromatic herbs (spearmint, thyme and oregano). Housewives were surveyed. Some seeds were given to plant and grow some vegetables. There was a talk about experiences and a food fair. It was found that the diet of the families was little varied because there is not a diversity of foods. After the harvest, a comparison of the preparations was made between before and after starting to have a variety of vegetables and as one of the results it was obtained that, the families increased preparations in broths, stews and salads.


Anuschka Van´t Hooft and Claudia Heindorf, Autonomous University of San Luis Potosí, Mexico

From farm to fork: the role of women and men in Indigenous communities of the Huasteca Potosina in Mexico
In indigenous societies in Mexico, a strict partition of duties and responsibilities between men and women often causes disadvantages for the female family members in terms of economic sovereignty, land tenure, and rights, as well as decision-making at the family and community level. However, men also recognize the important role women have to assure the food security of their family members. We want to present some examples of how division of labour is implemented in the Huastec Mayan communities in North-eastern Mexico and the impact of these traditions on the local food system. The chosen examples are based on several years of fieldwork in the region. In particular, we will highlight the division of labour and sharing of responsibilities regarding tasks such as the management of the most important land-use systems, food acquisition, and the selection, preparation, and commercialization of crops. Likewise, we will discuss daily customs and traditions related to food consumption and preparation. In this examination, we also want to reflect on the role of female and male participation in our fieldwork and in our selection of participatory methods. Based on our field observations, we conclude that strict division of work often has practical implications and generates disadvantages for Indigenous women. These distinct responsibilities and duties have a long tradition and assure household income and food security. Yet, they need to evolve and transform to adapt to complex challenges these Indigenous societies will face regarding food security and rural transformation.


José Carmen García Flores and María de Jesús Ordoñez Díaz, UNAM, Mexico

The family garden as a mitigator in the impact of COVID-19 in Jojutla, Morelos, México
This research evaluate the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the mental health of 60 families in Jojutla, Morelos. Deaths from COVID-19 is a serious result of the current health emergency, confinement brought with it an increase in domestic violence, stress, anxiety and other psychological disorders. The family garden (FG) provides food, medicinal plants and other useful resources for the owners, they are important areas due to the uses they fulfill in the social fabric. Thirty families that have a family garden and 30 that do not have were studied in order to compare their state of mind and how they coped with staying at home. Questionnaires were applied that yielded statistical information describing the psycho-emotional situation presented in isolation. Through participant observation, systematic tours and in-depth interviews, the conditions experienced were complemented and interpreted. Both groups suffered an alteration in their mental health, due to the scenario that existed and the high number of cases and deaths. The group without a family garden presented greater discomfort, lacking a place that would allow them to vent. On the other hand, people with FG showed a better attitude, expressed that this space is ideal for rest, relaxation, reflection and spirituality due to the shapes, colors and aromas of the vegetation. Staying at home, with FG, helped in physical activation, facilitated the coexistence of the family and the decrease of psychosomatic ailments, FG offers an alternative that enables vulnerable people to overcome mental health problems and decrease domestic violence.