Updates from the Andes Community of Practice
June 8, 2021
Community of Practice:
Collaboration Aims to Combat Potato Moth
Farmers and scientists from a pair of projects in the Bolivian altiplano have been collaborating to share knowledge on how to combat potato moth.
The regional team hosted a call with the projects, Quinoa and Yapuchiris. Joining the call were the IRD’s Oliver Dangles, PhD, who from 2009–2012 served as a project lead on potato moth research, and Jeffrey Bentley, PhD, from Agro-Insight. The group discussed how to better capture, for both a farmer and technician audience, previous learnings about the moth and its agroecological control.
Farmers and scientists from a pair of projects in the Bolivian altiplano have been collaborating to share knowledge on how to combat potato moth. Photo credit: Sonia Laura, PROSUCO
Creating New Ways to Market
In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the CCRP has been supporting farmers’ efforts to get their products directly to consumers now that open-air farmers’ markets are scarce. The CCRP’s technical assistance grant to the Peruvian Association of Farmers’ Markets helped create a website for online deliveries. In its first month of operation, 263 orders were placed through the site, netting US$13,500 for 67 small-scale farmers from 21 regions of Peru.
In the Peruvian Andes, growing native potatoes in multivarietal “mixed” fields (chaqru) is a traditional practice that mitigates against climatic risk and provides nutritional variety. A key factor for the conservation of diversity in situ is the challenge of linking chaqru to markets that value heterogeneity, diversity, and seasonality. During 13 weeks in 2020, a pilot program sold mixed potatoes from nine male guardian farmers to consumers in Lima. The farmers, who are part of central Peru’s AGUAPAN association and project developed a marketing brand and social media presence to create greater visibility for their products. At the end of the pilot, seven tons of potatoes had been sold to 348 clients, generating more than US$7,000.
LEISA Devotes Edition to the CCRP
CCRP grantee LEISA, a Spanish-language journal on agroecology, published a special issue on the CCRP’s work in the region. The issue is titled “Agroecology and participatory research: experiences from the Andes.”