Sons of Mezcal Documentary Screening + Q&A Session

Marsella Macias, LAII Master's Student

Wednesday, April 19, 2023 | 05:00 pm - 07:00 pm

UNM SUB, Acoma Room A


Join UNM Latin American Studies master's student Marsella Macias for a screening and Q&A session - Sons of  Mezcal  (2021) a documentary by Stephan Werk and filmed in Oaxaca, México. It is narrated in Zapotec but has been translated into English and Spanish. This screening is part of a guided discussion Marsella will lead in her Sustainability in Film course, taught by Professor Andreas Hernandez, UNM Sustainability Studies Program. Come gather and gain appreciation for agave / mezcal culture and human-plant relationships. 

Marsella has dedicated her research to agave and mezcal cultures for over 13 years. She recently retired from her twenty-plus year career in the food and beverage industry where she specialized in destilados de agave (agave distillates.) She is focusing her studies on agave- and mezcal-producing communities’ socio-economic, ecological, and cultural impacts imposed by Denomination of Origin (DO) certification programs to understand current community and future needs. 

Since 2012 Marsella has traveled throughout México to explore mezcal-producing regions, covering remote areas in Puebla, Michoacán, Sonora, and Zacatecas, plus multiple long-term stays in Oaxaca and Jalisco (her grandma's home state). Her acquired knowledge afforded her opportunities to fulfill roles including cultural educator, curator, bartender, staff educator, brand ambassador, and sales representative in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Marsella’s first-hand industry experience witnessing the global mezcal boom inspired a career pivot. Her México travels illuminated the integral roles of agave and mezcal in Mexican culture, yet both were being transformed into global commodities without producers reaping fair economic compensation. Seeing producers experience negative ecological impacts to their lands and also being continually shut out of regulation-making production decisions strengthened her commitment to pursue her MA with a concentration in Environmental Governance and Resilience.


This event is free and open to the public. Co-sponsored by SOLAS (Student Organization for Latin American Studies) and the LAII.