The second annual Humo en la Montaña cannabis cup took place in San Cristóbal de las Casas, Mexico December 16 through 18. The original cup in the south of Mexico drew cultivators from across the country together for a weekend of competition, collaboration, and celebration of the unique cannabis culture in this region.
The event spanned three days and featured a variety of workshops and events highlighting different niches of the cannabis movement here.
MesoameriCanna is the name of the organization behind this unheralded gem of the cannabis world, with coordination and support from local San Cristobal cannabis cultivation supply shop Simio Autocultivo.
While Mexico has long been synonymous with cannabis growing and a vast, unregulated industry, the emergence of a legal cannabis landscape is spawning the rapid evolution of a globally-connected cannabis culture here.
While not expressly legal recreationally in Mexico, individuals and brands are able to obtain an ‘Amparo’, or a federally-obtained injunction that grants them the immunity to use cannabis as a human right for the development of their personality.
Experts on this intersection of law, policy, and plant such as Emmanuel the ‘Abogado Verde’ were on hand to educate the local community about developments in the space, as well as to share samples of the ‘Pan Muerto’ white gas strain that placed first in the inaugural cup the year prior.
The event took place at the Jardin de Delicias, a remarkable hilltop mansion with 270 degree views over the Pueblo Magico below.
On Saturday, the festivities kicked off with a detailed judging and analysis of the various cannabis strains presented by growers from cities in southern Mexico such as Guanajuato, Guadalajara, Mexico City, Tuxtla Gutiérrez and locally from San Cristóbal de las Casas.
There was also live music performed by local DJ’s, a pop-up bazaar, and carts selling foods like canna-infused crepes and ‘Esquites’, a popular street food style corn snack in the region.
The first Japanese cannabis club in Latin America ‘Canna Ninja’ from Mexico City were on hand to share insights from their ongoing activism and cultivation work, as well as to provide detailed analysis of the various cannabis samples submitted to the cup.
An unexpected highlight of the event, and a testament to the transcontinental and translinguistic appeal of cannabis, came when one of the founders of Canna Ninja addressed the room full of cup judges in his native Japanese tongue when remarking upon the qualities of a particular strain while one of his Mexican partners translated from Japanese to Spanish.
The sunset at the extraordinary hilltop venue afforded everyone present another opportunity to roll one and enjoy each other’s company, and the evening culminated in a cannabis-infused dinner provided by Walter of Edibles Gourmet.
On Sunday, I arrived at 4:20 to listen to ‘The Fat Budstard’ speak about the connection between the soil, plant, and community in traditional cultivation practices such as have been ingrained in the region for centuries. He spoke about the various extraction processes people in the local industry use, as well as the nuanced regulatory scheduling differentiating CBD from THC-derived products and the loopholes people use to get around them.
Attendance swelled as word about the cup spread locally, and the organizers maintained a welcoming and streamlined operation to accommodate the increased volume of cannabis enthusiasts.
The winners of the cup were announced on Sunday, and separated into indoor and outdoor qualifications.
For the indoor varieties, the Sundae Driver strain grown by Cinco Doce Lab with Ixhua seeds placed first overall, while Furrygamo by ARC Autocultivo with Jellygenetics seeds placed second and The Pig 133 by Greenobel with Pacifics Seed Bank seeds came in at third.
For outdoor, Kritical Kush by The Weed Owl using Royal Queen seeds took top honors at the cup, with Motorbreath by Cinco Doce Lab via Ixhua seeds placed runner up and Sierra x Gorilla Glue #4 by Poxil Kush took home third place honors.
A late-afternoon double dip at the dab bar sent me packing early when I realized that my conversational Spanish became an impenetrable hodge-podge of misplaced syllables and mispronunciation.
On Monday, the crown jewel of the event took place. 25 people mobilized from the center of town to an indigenous cultivating community an hour away. It was the first time the cultivating family has hosted a delegation of cannabis enthusiasts, and the cultural exchange took over two years of relationship building beforehand to make happen.
We began the day with ‘Desahumo’, a play on words hybridizing the Spanish ‘desayuno’ and ‘humo’ , or ‘breakfast’ and ‘smoke’.
The mothers of the cultivating families prepared us beef head taquitos wrapped in hand made corn tortillas and coffee grown and ground on site – right next to the cannabis greenhouses. We learned from the head of the family how they came to cultivate herb in the first place, which started in 1981. The family had been tending to the same plot of land for generations without much economic opportunity for the corn, brains, and coffee that they were growing when a friend brought some cannabis seeds and introduced them to the budding market in the region.
Since then, they’ve continued to raise the plant and branch out to connect with other connoisseurs and cultivators in the region, culminating thus far in the epic closing event for Humo en la Montaña.
The second iteration of this spectacular event showed clear signs of growth and increasing momentum in the cannabis community spread out across the south of Mexico.
There were more cultivators, more events, more people, and more and better strains of cannabis this year than the inaugural event showcased, and there’s every reason in the world to anticipate further development and growth of the community can industry in this region.
About The Author
Dennis Walker is a satirist and multimedia producer with a long and robust relationship to psychedelics. He is the host of the Mycopreneur Podcast, a platform that spotlights and supports fungi entrepreneurs from around the world. His work has recently appeared in Rolling Stone, Forbes, and High Times among many other platforms.