On 7 March 2007, Jesús González, of CIMMYT’s Agua Fría research station, talked of CIMMYT’s aims and achievements to an audience of 400 during the traveling exhibition “No maize, no country,” organized by the Museo Nacional de Culturas Populares of CONACULTA, Mexico’s public agency for cultural promotion. The exhibition, held in Huauchinango, Puebla, this year, is designed to foster reflection and discussion regarding the importance and potential of maize in Mexico, as well as the challenges and opportunities of globalization.
This is not the first time that Agua Fría colleagues have publicized CIMMYT’s work to outside audiences: like staff at CIMMYT research stations worldwide, for years they have taken part in promotional activities and attended visits from representatives of academic institutions, community support organizations (like the Fundación Miguel Alemán), and farmer associations from the states of Veracruz and Mexico. Agua Fría is located in Puebla State near the border of Veracruz, and is an ideal location to test and demonstrate maize of humid, lowland tropical adaptation.
Inaugurated formally in 2000, Agua Fría has grown and developed significantly. Those who work at the station are grateful for the contributions of CIMMYT management and the enormous dedication of staff who contributed to station development, including Raymundo López, Philippe Monneveux, Dan Jeffers, David Bergvinson, and Alejandro López. Up until 2002, for example, the station had only provisional offices, no telephone service, and no connection to Internet. The 3.5 kilometer road leading to the station from the highway was nearly impassible in the rainy season, making the station accessible only on foot, or by having the bus towed in with a tractor. Today, the access road is paved and facilities are fully functional for staff and visitors.