Pedro Rodríguez was born and raised in Guatemala City, but he soon noticed the beauty of the country side, and at the age of 17 he started traveling and visiting a lot of indigenous towns. His interest in the knowledge of the ancestors and the called Mayan traditions just began, he learned so much from the incongruences of the modern city life and the life in the country side. In the last years he has been doing a lot of community outreach work for several organizations and for personal projects as well.
His passion for Nature, healthy foods and lifestyle lead him to open a vegetarian restaurant that also worked as a community center where art, music and gastronomy were the platform to showcase the important connection between seeds and our plates. Pedro has been a vegetarian for 17 years and he is very aware of the big problem of malnutrition in his country, he is currently working in rural indigenous communities teaching basic principles of nutrition, implementing native super nutritious plants in the traditional kitchen and recipes of the indigenous people. Also runs an urban sustainability demonstration house “EL INFINITO Cultura Permanente” in Quetzaltenango (Xela).
Pedro is a natural chef and nutrition educator, permaculturist and a passionate gardener, has participated as a volunteer in several ecological projects and organizations and is currently working in collaboration with governmental programs “Hambre cero” (zero hunger) in several rural areas.
Education is key and example from the great leaders is the best way to spread it out. I want to learn how to do my part the best I can.
Websites: Project Nuevo Mundo & El Infinito Cultura Permanente
Wholistic solutions from the past for the present and future
In this talk, Pedro Rodriguez, experienced chef at vegetarian restaurants, promoter of healthy life styles and healthy diets, researcher and enthusiast of traditional Guatemalan cuisine will discuss a number of solutions to some of the most intriguing challenges of modern times, where the malnutrition and climate change are major factors to consider.
Analyzing the food and traditional customs of indigenous elders of Guatemala, researching native plants almost forgotten and unused, Pedro made recipes that reintroduce these native super-foods into the kitchen of families living in rural areas of Guatemala who are most affected by malnutrition and the challenges of modern agriculture.
Acknowledging education as a key factor towards the process of reintroducing indigenous plants into modern popular home cooked foods, Pedro promotes the use of native plants that are rich in nutrients, drought resistant, and environmentally friendly as a solution. The following criteria are considered:
• Local and Native solutions
• Rescue of local biodiversity
• Reducing pest and improving disease resistance in agriculture
• Promoting organic and sustainable agricultural practices
• Climatological adaptation, drought resistance
• Recipes from the past and new ways to be implemented
• Cultural acceptance