Various explanations of ceviche's origin exist. According to some historic sources from Peru, ceviche originated among the Moche, a coastal civilization that began to flourish in the area of current-day northern Peru nearly 2000 years ago. The Moche apparently used the fermented juice from the local banana passionfruit. Recent investigations further show that during the Inca Empire, fish was marinated with chicha, an Andean fermented beverage. Different chronicles also report that along the Peruvian coast prior to the arrival of Europeans, fish was consumed with salt and ají. Furthermore, this theory proposes that the natives simply switched to the citrus fruits brought by the Spanish colonists but that the main ingredients of the plate remained essentially the same. In Ecuador, ceviche may have also had its origins among its coastal civilizations since both Peru and Ecuador have shared cultural heritages (such as the Inca Empire) and a large variety of fish and shellfish.