Farmers in Mexico's Riviera Maya are quick to explain that the soil they till is not as rich in nutrients as they would like. In fact, this highly touristed strip of Caribbean coast along the Yucatan Peninsula, from resort-rich Cancun to the Mayan ruins of Tulum, is perched atop a massive limestone shelf and has relatively poor soil cover, except perhaps in jungle areas where there's a surface humus of organic debris.
But that hasn't slowed the growth of the Riviera Maya as a leading holiday destination in Mexico, or the consequently fast pace of development as more and more accommodations are built there. Instead, it has presented an increasingly nettlesome food-supply challenge to the large hotels, all-inclusive resorts, and restaurants for which the area is now well known, especially any that hope to tap into a rising interest in organic and farm-to-table eating experiences.
Encouragingly, opportunity has spurred innovation, which is now at the heart of an emerging eco-consciousness in this place not commonly associated with sustainable tourism practices. And one particular resort, Hacienda Tres Ríos, working in concert with an associated organic farm called Ethos, is at the cutting edge of efforts to demonstrate a new range of eco-conscious tourism possibilities, including an immersive, sustainable food experience that takes farm-to-table programming to a new level.