Where Maca Really Comes From
Based on the historical and archaeological records available to us the consensus is that Maca originated in the high Andes of Peru around the province of Junin. Like many other tubers and roots, this cruciferous vegetable grew natively and wildly in the high mountains surrounding lake Chinchaycocha (a.k.a. lake Junin). This very large (529.88 km2 or 204.59 sq mi) lake’s presence is important because it creates a micro-climate that generates more annual precipitation, allowing native plants to grow easily. Scientists postulate that the first human settlers in the area, the Pumpush, discovered that Maca roots were a good source of food as early as 10,000 years ago. And archaeological researchers have discovered ancient roots in a cave several kilometers east of the lake and date them from this era. They suggest this as evidence that wild Maca roots were gathered and used as a main source of food during this time. This is certainly the earliest evidence we have of the use of Maca and places its origin clearly in a region northeast of the modern-day town of Junin, in a region called Ondores. Several locals also confirm that in their oral tradition Ondores is considered the “birth place” of Maca.
Exerted from: Peruvia Maca Article