Wild cuisines: The recipe for Amazon’s survival

Jan 14, 2019, 6:42 AM EST
(Source: Matt Zimmerman/flickr)
(Source: Matt Zimmerman/flickr)

A gathering of politicians, journalists and chefs in the Peruvian capital Lima in last May gave the world a taste of what they consider as panacea to address the Amazon rainforest’s sustainability challenges.

The flock was encircling tables, decked with exotic delicacies from the rainforest, and the event sought to draw investors to “Expo Amazonica,” an August exhibition of the traditional Amazonian foods, medicinal plants and other overlooked culinary riches, notes BioGraphic.

The whole exercise is driven by the idea that promoting native wild foods of the Amazon instead of raising monocultures such as timber, cacao, and palm oil, could stem the indiscriminate deforestation in the jungle and help save biodiversity while conserving indigenous culture and augmenting income of locals.

The Gastronomy Association of Ucayali (AGASU), a group comprising of young and established chefs, believes that the native wild foods and medicinal plants of the Amazon could be harnessed by local communities to make profit without harming regional biodiversity although this would be a mammoth task, requiring concerted efforts by Amazon dwellers, chefs, product developers, and policymakers.