A Journey Towards Organics
Meet Miliki Lopez Mendez, a graduate of Vida Autenica’s organic agriculture program, and one of our founding vendors at Feria Tinamaste.
Thirty-five years ago, Miliki was working on a conventional agricultural farm, where the spraying of agro toxins was common practice. Although he was highly trained in the use of the products and suited up in full protective equipment, the constant exposure, and handling of these toxins was too much for his system to handle. While spraying a tomato plantation, he became very ill, and fell into a coma; but, fortunately, made a full recovery.
Fearing continued exposure to harmful agro toxins, Miliki chose to walk away from agriculture. He took up construction work, disconnecting himself from his love of gardening for close to thirty years.
Then a friend told him about Vida Autentica who offered organic agriculture courses.
Enthusiastically, Miliki participated in a variety of classes, introducing him to a new way of learning and working with the land and animals, in harmony with nature. Upon receiving a scholarship, he pursued further education in organics at the Instituto Nacional de Aprendizaje (INA). In 2016, he became affiliated with AsoOrganico, a cooperative of farmers working together to attain organic certification. After two years of transition, Miliki will acquire his certificate at the end of this year.
Over the past five years, Miliki has become a fierce advocate for, an organic way of life. He embraces it very much as a holistic way of life.
Being an organic farmer is not merely defined by the non-use of toxins on your crops and the land.
It’s a non-toxic outlook towards all aspects of life. It means respect for yourself and your body, your neighbors and community, and the protection of clean water, clean air, healthy soil, and mother earth.
Carrying his firm belief that the three pillars of life are knowledge, water, and soil, Miliki has built quite a business for himself: Tinamastes Organicos. Within his large greenhouse, he produces a variety of fresh greens and medicinal plants, along with a production line of nonGMO animal feeds, fertilizers, and plant foliars. You can find him, his big smile, and his wonderful products every week in Tinamastes. Please come, say hello!
~by Larissa Skye Van Rensselaer
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