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Maca Root: A Fascinating History


Maca was first used by the Inca more than 2000 years ago for energy and endurance and is still commonly traded as a medicine and energy giving herb throughout the towns and villages of Peru today.

In today's modern times, maca root is commonly traded as a medicine and energy giving herb throughout the towns and villages of Peru. Studying its rich history in Peru is fascinating because its cultivation goes back perhaps five millennia.

It was an integral part of the diet and commerce of the high Andes region. When they controlled that South American region, the Incas found maca so potent that they restricted its use to their Royalty's court. Upon overrunning the Inca people, conquering Spaniards became aware of this plant's value and collected tribute in maca roots for export to Spain.

Maca was used as an energy enhancer and for nutrition by the Spanish Royalty as well. But eventually knowledge of maca's special qualities died out, being preserved only in a few remote Peruvian communities.

In the 1960s and later in the 1980s, German and North American scientists researching botanicals in Peru, rekindled interest in maca through nutritional analyses of what were designated as 'the lost crops of the Andes.' The publication of a book by that name introduced maca to the world.

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Cultivated for thousands of years at elevations over 14,000 feet, Maca had been an important food and medicinal supplement for villagers who inhabited the Peruvian highlands.

Although this rare member of the radish family has been used by indigenous peoples for thousands of years, many considered Maca to be a "lost herb" to the developing world until recently.

When the Spanish arrived to Peru in 1533, these little plants were hidden away and remained on the brink of extinction for centuries. In the Mid 1980's, The Board of Genetic Plant Resources actually listed Maca as a plant in danger of extinction...

Now, everything is changing as Maca is being eagerly sought after for its extraordinary medicinal powers and attributes.

Learn more maca history:

Article: "Secrets of the Lost Root- A Brief History of Maca Magic on the High Plains."

Article: "A 2000 Year Old Crop Resprouts in the Andes"

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Our company, HERBS AMERICA, in cooperation with Oregon Exotics Rare Fruit Nursery, began to explore the Peruvian highlands as early as 1992, and by 1994 we were the first to introduce twenty cultivars of live Maca roots and distribute them to every state in the USA, as well as Europe, China, Japan, New Zealand and India.   

Over time, these cultivars were nurtured into what has now become HERBS AMERICA'S special brand of internationally known Maca root called MACA MAGIC, and is the finest quality maca available today.

Its root being the source of the power, Maca, (Lepidium Peruvianum Ch.) is grown just below the glaciated slopes of the Peruvian Andes. Its newly described alkaloids, sterols and various amazing powers have made it legendary throughout the world.

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