The Body Shop Foundation Supports Tarwi Project in Peru
June 21, 2016
Tarwi may not be a well-known legume in the US, but it is helping farmers in Peru not only sustain themselves financially, but also improve soil quality!
Thanks to extremely generous support from the The Body Shop Foundation, ACA has been working with local communities in the Andean highlands to plant and harvest tarwi on their land. Tarwi is an ancient Andean legume that has nitrogen-fixing properties, which can improve soil fertility and help reduce agricultural expansion, contributing toward the conservation of threatened highland forests. This means that farmers can plant it on degraded land and it will not only help restore the minerals in the soil, but will also be a good source of food to be consumed and sold. The crop has also been proven to deliver favorable returns for beneficiaries, as it has a strong local and regional market.
The tarwi project supports the livelihoods of 31 farmers across these communities by providing them with important information and constant technical support to promote best practices for a productive tarwi harvest. Through this project, ACA is helping to strengthen the tarwi farmers’ association Flor Azul (“Blue Flower” in English), referring to the crop’s delicate blue flowers. Together, we have already successfully improved market access and created a rotating seed fund, which ensures healthy harvests in the future and is central to maintaining the vibrant agricultural and biological diversity for which the region is known.