Chiapas, Mexico, August 2019
Chiapas has the highest rate of Coca Cola consumers in the
world. Potable water is increasingly scarce, some villages don’t even have
Thus, many residents drink Coca-Cola produced by a local plant, easier to
find than bottled water and as almost as cheap.
Since the arrival of soft drinks in Chiapas, half a century ago, the
beverages have been so intertwined with the local culture that they
become part of the spiritual ceremonies, along with incense, candles, and
chickens to scarify. People use Coca-cola while praying and believe in its
healing power. "As our world is changing, the spiritual world changes in
the same way,” natural healers say.
In the meantime, diabetes and dental diseases have become a severe
problem for the population, which was once used to a very simple diet.
The mortality rate from diabetes in Chiapas increased enormously.
The mismanagement of local resources and the water system problems,
exacerbated by climate change and water shortages, open the doors to
massive and harmful use of soft drinks. This reportage focuses on how
indigenous life and rituals in Chiapas changed facing modern life.