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Charming Individuals with Immense Knowledge, and Hilarious Wits: Daniel Zizumbo-Villarreal and Patricia Colunga GM

Celebrating 50 Years of Wonderful Co-Authors and Editors

Finally, I would like to encourage all of you who do not know them to look at the remarkable articles, books and films that Daniel Zizumbo-Villarreal and his partner Patricia Colunga GM have elaborated over the last couple decades regarding the Mesoamerican diet, recognized by UNESCO as a patrimony oi global significance, and the potential for its foods and fermented beverages to help Mexico (and the Southwest US) deal with the most pressing agroecological, medical, and nutritional challenges facing all of us.

To me, their work represents what the future of ethnobiology, integrated health and sustainable agriculture will be– they have reset our goals for the future. Although I have known them and their fine work on gene flow between Mesoamerican crops (agaves, beans, squashes) and their wild relatives for over 3 decades, they have recently brought many threads of their work together into a visionary “tapestry” of possibilities in serve to Latin Americans most in need. On top of that, they are charming individuals with immense knowledge of their homelands, and have wonderfully hilarious wits.

We have traveled out into the Yucatan peninsula’s cenotes and Mayan ruins together, and along the Arizona/Sonora border where Coronado’s entrada first came north toward Zuni. Stay tuned for an almost-completed publication we’ve collaborated on comparing the Mesoamerican and Aridamerican diets for their health benefits.

I am grateful to them and all the other Mexican ethnobotanists whose intellectual insights and ethics have so deeply influenced mine. Blessings to all of you, from A to Z.

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