During his travels, he met many different ethnic groups and developed a profound respect for their traditional knowledge and medicinal practices. In 2020, amidst the pandemic, he founded Lopuna, a Colombian based company producing premium Sal de Gusano, or worm salt and Atta ant salt. His goal was simple: to provide work for his struggling Colombian bartender friends while preserving the traditional indigenous wisdom and showcasing the unique ingredients of Colombian cuisine.
As the business grew, Matthies expanded his product line to include peppers from different regions of Colombia. But Lopuna is not just a business, it's a regenerative one. The worms and ants used in Lopuna's products are sourced from different regions of Colombia, including the Leticia region for worms and Santander for ants. Matthies has developed close relations with producers growing the peppers used in Lopuna's products in various regions such as Cali, Pereira, Filandia, the Caribbean coast as well as the Amazon.
Lopuna has grown from a response to pandemic hardships to a passion project that showcases regenerative farming practices and preserves traditional indigenous wisdom. It's a testament to Matthies' love for Colombia, and you can taste it in every sip of their creations, which are designed to expand flavor consciousness.