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Abstract Detail

Symposium: Speaking of Food: connecting basic and applied science

Bye, Robert [1], Linares, Edelmira [1].

Ethnobotany - bridging basic and applied research on food plants in Mexico.

Ethnobotany (the interactions and relationships between plants and people over time and space) bridges the basic sciences and the applied sciences. Field studies coupled with social development programs as well as laboratory research permits bidirectional information flow as well as the benefits the farmers through participatory research. Mexico is a major center of origin of over 100 important domesticate plant as well a corresponding system of diversification centers, based upon its great biological and cultural diversity. The international recognition of Mexican gastronomy in UNESCO's Intangible Cultural Heritage Program as well as the increasing awareness of the Mexican public to the importance of the "milpa" agricultural system that promotes cultural, biological and ecological conservation has arisen from the growing influence of interdisciplinary research upon public awareness related to national food systems. Our approach includes inventory exploration, vegetal product documentation, plant characterizations (agronomic, biological, molecular, etc.), valorization, and knowledge reversion in order to promote activities of rescuing, conserving and developing food plants many of which are positioned along the wild-domesticate continuum. Collaborative investigation attends to such themes as antiquity of edible plants through historical documents and archaeology, drought resistance, phenotypic variation, molecular sequencing, nutritional analysis, detection of antinutritional factors, as well as horizontal knowledge transfer. These themes will be illustrated from such programs as "Semillatan" - accompanying the Sierra Tarahumara, Biodiversity of Mexican Gastronomy, and Quelites: native vegetables. The collaboration between the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México and various sectors of society such as indigenous communities, local producers, universities, NGOs (e.g., Slow Food, Conservatorio de la Cultura Gastronómica Mexicana, etc.), and governmental organizations (e.g., CONABIO, SEMARNAT, SAGARPA, etc.) permit academic and non-academic people to contribute to food security as well as the advancement of science for the benefit of Mexican society.

Broader Impacts:

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1 - Universidad Nacional Autnoma de Mxico, Jardn Botnico, Instituto de Biologa, Mxico, DF, 04510 , MEXICO

edible greens

Presentation Type: Symposium or Colloquium Presentation
Session: SY06
Location: Grand Ballroom A/Riverside Hilton
Date: Tuesday, July 30th, 2013
Time: 8:45 AM
Number: SY06001
Abstract ID:872
Candidate for Awards:None

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