When we think of mushrooms and the southern Mexico point out of Oaxaca, the initial issue which historically comes to brain is María Sabina, Huautla de Jiménez and hallucinogenic “magic” mushrooms. But little by little which is all altering as a end result of the groundbreaking perform of Josefina Jiménez and Johann Mathieu in mycology, via their business, Mico-lógica.
Dependent in the village of Benito Juárez, located in Oaxaca’s Ixtlán district (much more commonly acknowledged as the Sierra Norte, the state’s principal ecotourism area), Mico-lógica’s mission is threefold: to practice each Mexicans and guests to the place in the low-value cultivation of a selection of mushroom species to educate about the medicinal, nutritional and environmental (sustainable) worth of mushrooms and to perform ongoing study with regards to ideal climatic areas and the range of substrata for mushroom lifestyle.
The French-born Mathieu moved to Mexico, and in simple fact to Huautla de Jiménez, in 2005. “Indeed, coming all the way to Mexico from France to go after my fascination in mushrooms looks like a prolonged way to vacation,” Mathieu described in a modern job interview in Oaxaca. “But there genuinely wasn’t considerably of an opportunity to carry out reports and expand a company in Western Europe,” he continues, “given that reverence for mushrooms had been all but completely eradicated by The Church in excess of the system of centuries and I uncovered that Mexico even now maintains a regard and appreciation for the medicinal and nutritional worth of hongos. Mexico is considerably from mycophobic.”
Huautla de Jiménez is far more than a 5 hour push from the closest metropolitan heart. Appropriately, Mathieu sooner or later realized that staying in Huautla, whilst holding an historic attract and being in a geographic area conducive to functioning with mushrooms, would hinder his attempts to develop a enterprise and cultivate widespread interest in understanding about fungi. Mathieu grew to become cognizant of the burgeoning popularity of Oaxaca’s ecotourism communities of the Sierra Norte, and indeed the Feria Regional de Hongos Silvestres (regional wild mushroom festival), held annually in Cuahimoloyas.
Mathieu fulfilled Josefina Jiménez at the summertime weekend mushroom celebration. Jiménez had moved to Oaxaca from hometown Mexico Town in 2002. The two shared equivalent passions Jiménez experienced researched agronomy, and for near to a decade had been functioning with sustainable agriculture projects in rural farming communities in the Huasteca Potosina location of San Luis Potosí, the mountains of Guerrero and the coastline of Chiapas. Mathieu and Jiménez grew to become organization, and then life companions in Benito Juárez.
Mathieu and Jiménez are concentrating on three mushroom species in their arms-on seminars oyster (seta), shitake and reishi. Their one particular-working day workshops are for oyster mushrooms, and two-day clinics for the latter two species of fungus. “With mushroom growing kit , and to a lesser extent shitake, we are also teaching a fair bit about the medicinal makes use of of mushrooms, so more time is required,” says Mathieu, “and with oyster mushrooms it really is predominantly [but not solely] a program on cultivation.”
Even though coaching seminars are now only offered in Benito Juárez, Mathieu and Jiménez program to expand operations to contain each the central valleys and coastal locations of Oaxaca. The item is to have a community of producers growing various mushrooms which are optimally suited for cultivation based mostly on the distinct microclimate. There are about 70 sub-species of oyster mushrooms, and thus as a species, the adaptability of the oyster mushroom to different climatic locations is exceptional. “The oyster can be grown in a multitude of distinct substrata, and that’s what we’re experimenting with appropriate now,” he elucidates. The oyster mushroom can prosper when grown on products which would in any other case be squander, this kind of as discard from cultivating beans, sugar cane, agave (including the fibrous squander produced in mezcal distillation), peas, the typical river reed acknowledged as carriso, sawdust, and the listing goes on. Agricultural squander which could otherwise be left to rot or be burned, each with adverse environmental implications, can sort substrata for mushroom cultivation. It must be noted, though trite, that mushroom cultivation is a highly sustainable, environmentally friendly market. Over the previous many many years Mexico has in reality been at the fore in many areas of sustainable business.
Mathieu exemplifies how mushrooms can provide an arguably even increased environmental good:
“They can maintain up to 30 thousand times their mass, possessing implications for inhibiting erosion. They’ve been employed to cleanse up oil spills by means of absorption and hence are an crucial motor vehicle for habitat restoration. Investigation has been done with mushrooms in the battle in opposition to carpenter ant destruction it is been recommended that the use of fungi has the potential to entirely revamp the pesticide market in an environmentally helpful way. There are actually hundreds of other eco-friendly purposes for mushroom use, and in every single scenario the mushroom remains an edible by-merchandise. Consider a search at the Paul Stamets YouTube lecture, six Methods Mushrooms Can Help save The Globe.”
Mathieu and Jiménez can usually be identified promoting their merchandise on weekends in the organic markets in Oaxaca. They’re equally far more than satisfied to examine the dietary worth of their goods which variety from by natural means their fresh mushrooms, but also as preserves, marinated with possibly chipotle and nopal or jalapeño and cauliflower. The mushroom’s vitamin B12 can not be identified in fruits or vegetables, and appropriately a diet program which involves fungi is very essential for vegetarians who cannot get B12, most typically contained in meats. Mushrooms can simply be a substitute for meats, with the edge that they are not loaded with antibiotics and hormones usually found in industrially processed meat goods.
Mico-lógica also promote teas and extracts manufactured from diverse mushroom species, each formulated as both a nutritional supplement, or for their medicinal houses. Whilst neither Mathieu nor Jiménez has the pharmacological background to prescribe mycological remedy for serious illnesses, Mathieu’s possess investigation points to the medicinal use of mushrooms relationship from pre-history, to the current. He notes homes of mushrooms which can help to restore the immune system, and thus the use of fungi as a complement in the therapy of most cancers and AIDS, and their utility in controlling diabetic issues and managing higher cholesterol.
“We should all be embracing the natural and organic generation of mushrooms,” Mathieu concludes. “It’s so straightforward, it involves a minimal cash investment decision, and it supplies significant benefits, equally for people ingesting hongos for dietary and medicinal reasons, and for the producers, even modest scale. Mico-lógica also sells dried mushrooms. However most of the dried mushrooms sold in Mexico are imported from China, and are not organic and natural. It really is a true disgrace on many ranges.”