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diagram of terraces

Organic Agriculture and the Commercialization of Andean Crops

Thumbnail image The Andean grain kiwicha, growing alongside maize. Agricultural terraces are ideal for the cultivation of naturally produced organic crops, especially Andean staples such as maize, the nutritious Andean grains quinoa and kiwicha and European introductions such as wheat, barley and broad beans. The use of modern agrochemicals on such terraces destroys the favourable biological microenvironment, as well as removing vitamins and taste from the produce.
space Thumbnail image Potatoes, staple crop that the Andes has given to the world, generally grown at higher altitudes than maize, up to c. 4,000 m. CT and its local NGO partner Asociacion Andina Cusichaca (AAC) are now developing commercialization projects with rural communities, forming independent 'Associations of Local Producers' to deliver organic crops cultivated on restored terraces directly to the markets of Lima and other cities. The scheme will involve rural family members who have migrated to the cities in the marketing of the products from their home communities. Ultimately the goal is to reach international consumers.
space Thumbnail image Quinua crop prior to harvest, growing in Pomacocha in the Chicha-Soras valley. As an important support to these new commercialisation projects, CT and AAC have recently established a plant in Pomacocha in the Chicha-Soras valley to process organic crops such as quinua. Products will be sorted, graded and bagged, ready for sale in Lima, where negotiations are currently under way with prospective commercial outlets.
space Thumbnail image Machinery in the processing plant in Pomacocha that removes the husks from the quinua. It is then sorted and bagged prior to marketing. space