Call for Proposals
USD 200.000
Counterpart Amount:
USD 200.000
Execution time
36 Months
Total Amount:
USD 400.000
Participating countries:
Bolivia Bolivia Chile Chile Ecuador Ecuador
Funding source:
FONTAGRO Amount 50% Other agencies 0% Counterpart Amount 50%

Executive Summary

The high Andes of Bolivia and Ecuador, and the Araucania in Southern Chile are highly vulnerable to climate change, show high poverty incidence, and have few economic opportunities. Legumes of the genus Lupinus show high adaptation capacity to adverse weather and soil conditions. In Bolivia and Ecuador the bitter Lupinus (Lupinus mutabilis) prevail, while in Chile, both bitter and sweet (L. albus, L. angustifolius y L. luteum) species are cultivated.  It is estimated that in Bolivia approximately  1,500 ha of Lupinus are cultivated mostly by smallholders. In Ecuador it is estimated that there are 9,596 farms that cultivate a total of 5,974 ha. In Chile over the last 5 years, the area dedicated to bitter Lupinus crops has fluctuated between 4,600 and 12,300 ha, while in sweet Lupinus it has fluctuated between  5,900 and 12,700 ha. Bitter lupinus is cultivated mainly by the Mapuche ethnic group, while sweet lupinus is cultivated by entrepreneurs who cater to the animal feed industry. Lupinus have high nutritional value in terms of protein, calcium, iron and zinc, among others. 

The purpose of the project is to promote technological innovations to strengthen resilience of production systems in the High Andes of Bolivia and Ecuador and Southern Chile through the introduction of Lupinus and thus contribute to improving farmers’ well-being. 

The project developed a series of technological innovations in Lupinus production, processing, and consumption, and thus contributed to increasing knowledge about the crop as well as increased economic and environmental benefits for farmers.

The technological solution

The following technological solutions were developed

1. Lupinus production: Crop management techniques, planting density and inoculum of rhizobia for lupinus seeds were defined.

2. Post-harvest: Tarwi (Lupinus angustifolius) de-bittering technique and tarwi thresher for family use.

3. Local consumption: Different recipes made from tarwi based on local and external knowledge were generated to promote consumption.

4. Transformation: The entire production process of high quality tarwi mote (in Quechua chuchusmuti) was implemented for its commercialization in supermarkets.


In Bolivia, there was large yield variability during a dry year (270 mm) vs a normal year (450 mm). 

  • The beetle  Apion sp and Anthracnose (Colletotrichum spp), can reduce productivity up to 80% and 40%, respectively. 
  • A threshing machine was introduced in local communities to reduce labor and increase grain quality. 
  • Technology to remove alkaloids was validated. It reduced water use from 80 to 40 l/kg of grain. 
  • A recipe containing 9 local dishes was prepared and promoted among families. 
  • A partnership was established with a private enterprise to improve the image of Lupinus and three processed products were sold in the two main supermarket chains in Cochabamba. In 2017, 1,500 units were sold/month. 

In Ecuador yields increased from 515 to 909 kg/ha due to fertilization. 

  • Local varieties showed good yields but could not compete in a drier year with the new variety “INIAP 450 Andino” which is more precocious. 
  • A new technique to remove alkaloids was developed. It reduced processing time from 84 to 58 hours, and water use from 96 to 66 l/kg of grain. 
  • Processed lupine without alkaloids is consumed by 71 % of families in the highlands, 20 % in the Coast and 87 % in the Eastern region. Per capita consumption per year is 4 kg in the highlands and Eastern region and 2 kg on the Coast. 
  • Partnerships were established with private companies  to evaluate acceptability and preference for various lupine products (flour, crunchy grain, lyophilized powder, frozen, canned, flavored milk and yogurt). In 2017, the first batch of lupine flour (300 kg) was sold to the Czech Republic.

In Chile, L. albus showed a superior potential yield than the other two species. The “Alboroto INIA” variety had an average yield of 4.7 t/ha during the first season and 5.7 t/ha during the second one. L. angustifolius had an intermediate yield and  L. luteus showed the lowest yield. 

  • L. luteus had the highest protein content, followed by L. albus and L. angustifolius. However, due to its highest productivity, L. albus had the highest production of protein per ha (1,500 to 2,000 kg). 
  • BYMV (Bean Yellow Mosaic Virus) appears to be a potential problem for lupine production in Southern Chile. A rye hedge surrounding lupine parcels stopped aphid transmission and reduced significantly the incidence of BYMV. 
  • A meeting was organized between INIA and a private salmon feed mill. As a result it started to buy and process lupine.


The project trained, through different methods, more than 500 producers, in addition, more than 100 families were direct beneficiaries that currently market tarwi to local companies.

Sustainable Development Goals

No poverty Zero Hunger Good health and well-being Climate action Partnerships for the goals

Main donors

Participating Organizations

  • Fundación para la Promoción e Investigación de Productos Andinos (PROINPA) - Bolivia
  • Instituto de Investigaciones Agropecuarias (INIA) - Chile
  • Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Agropecuarias (INIAP) - Ecuador

Graphics and data

Financing by country (in USD)
FONTAGRO Amount Other agencies Counterpart Amount

Geolocated Map


Project leader Bolivia

Pablo Mamani


Ana Karina Saavedra


Nelson Mazon


Angel Murillo Ibay


Eduardo Peralta

With the support of
Fondo Coreano de Alianza para el Conocimiento en Tecnología e Innovación (KPK)