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Revista fitotecnia mexicana

versão impressa ISSN 0187-7380


FERNANDEZ SUAREZ, Rocío; MORALES CHAVEZ, Luis A.  e  GALVEZ MARISCAL, Amanda. Importance of mexican maize landraces in the national diet: An essential review. Rev. fitotec. mex [online]. 2013, vol.36, suppl., pp.275-283. ISSN 0187-7380.

In México, numerous varieties of maize (Zea mays L.) landraces are employed for preparation of a great amount of traditional culinary dishes in addition to tortillas. Maize is a fundamental element of the national cuisine. Additionally, native landraces are the livelihood of thousands of Mexican rural families. However, under globalization tendencies, "modern" eating habits are being adopted, substituting traditional dishes for processed foods, which are not necessarily maize-based. This fact, along with other factors such as biocultural memory loss, agricultural activities abandonment, or climate change endanger landrace existence. Conserving native maize varieties is an urgent task, which requires short-term strategies. This review describes the fundamental role maize landraces play in the Mexican diet, in spite of changes in food consumption patterns already registered in México. A number of traditional maize-based culinary preparations, emphasizing the relationship between special uses, races and the physicochemical characteristics of the grains, are described. This review promotes demand increments of native maize landraces based on reevaluation of traditional uses, as well as promotion of novel uses and alternative practices that have not been properly exploited. All these actions take part of the strategies for in situ conservation of Mexican maize landraces.

Palavras-chave : Zea mays; maize landraces; culinary uses; special uses; Mexican diet.

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