The Carijona and their food

The Carijona and their food

Colombia - 01 August, 2022

The Carijona people from the Miraflores municipality, on the banks of the Vaupés River, have a wide knowledge of the local biodiversity that expresses itself in the varied and wide range of local traditional dishes. For instance, the yuca brava (wui, bitter cassava) becomes casabe pies and fariña (tapioca), also its starch is used in the mingaos, a local porridge.

To help in the caring of sick patients there is the kumu or patabá palm. In addition, fruits like the cervera (ëbatá), mamita (waroro) and caimo (waraimë) are used to sweeten life and to heal the flu. The chili pepper (jëmëi) is used to accompany other products like mojojoy, quiñapira and marisca.

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Foto: Edwin Roncancio

With the leadership of Edwin Roncancio, and the support of the SENA institute, this knowledge is being compiled to strengthen the community, education processes and food security. The process also includes the participation of the female elders, Nohora Narváez, Ana Benjumea, Lilia Gómez, and Efigenia Romero, as well as of all the community.

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Foto: Nurys Silva

This research on biodiversity and food variety seeks to combine traditional knowledge of local food with different transformation techniques used to produce dried fruits, marmalades, hot sauces and wine. The community is experimenting and selecting three products that will have the INVIMA registration and all the support to achieve the consolidation of a line of production and commercialization. In this way, this project aims to strengthen the economy of the Carijona by using tropical forest edible products.

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Foto: Nurys Silva

The project Manekone Karijona Esemarï Tae (Vamos por el fortalecimiento carijona) in the Indigenous Resguardo of Puerto Nare is an initiative with the support of Tropenbos Colombia and Visión Amazonia.