Fruit Productivity and Competitiveness Andean
Tropical fruits are the third most valuable fruit group worldwide, behind bananas and apples. Latin America and the Caribbean, regions where fruits are mainly cultivated by smallholders, are well positioned to benefit from the increase in international demand for fresh fruit and its derivatives, which are growing at a similar rate.
Fruit farming is an economic activity of increasing importance in Colombia, Ecuador and Peru on which many family farmers depend for their livelihood. The project “Andean Fruit Productivity and Competitiveness”, that is being carried out in these three Andean countries, aims to increase the productivity and competitiveness of the avocado, Passiflora genus fruit and citrus fruit chains through coordinated actions between producers, processors, traders, academic and training institutions, to implement sustainable technologies for adaptation to climate change, and improve the quality and shelf life of fresh fruits or their derivatives.
Moderation in the use of agrochemicals, integrated soil fertility management, better water management, carbon sequestration, added value to fruits and their residues are some of the issues on which the project is contributing to the sustainable growth of the sector in the region.
The technological solution
Regarding adaptation to climate change, studies on fertigation in avocado, granadilla and gulupa crops have been carried out. In the production stage, Global GAP certifications of fruit growers have been increased. It has also been done: monitoring of fruit pesticide residues, physicochemical evaluation of four varieties of passionflower, three avocado and two citrus; six studies of shelf life at two storage conditions; the evaluation of the losses of quality during the commercialization of two varieties of avocado and two of passion fruit.
22 prototypes of food products: 3 cosmetics, 2 enzyme supports, a bioplastic and a bio-compound have been designed, some of them with scale-up studies, production costs and environmental impact. Two are already in the market.
Orange peel biorefineries configurations were evaluated and co-combustion of this waste with coal was proposed to reduce its environmental impact.
- In Ecuador, for the area of influence, avocado plantations with irrigation went from zero to 357 hectares between 2012 and 2019.
- In Colombia, the avocado fertigation farm of the project, average production has increased by 35% in 18 months of observation. Right there, the fruit suppliers to the marketer-transformer went from 13 to 60 (avocado), with an increase in Global-GAP certifications went from 5 to 32 between 2017 and 2019.
- In citrus, suppliers with future contracts went from 3 to 12 in the same period.
- In both fruits, exports and local sales increased proportionally. 29 new value-added products have been designed and two biorefinery proposals (passion fruit and orange) have been completed.
The direct beneficiaries are 2000 family farmers from Colombia (Caldas, Risaralda and Antioquenian Cauca), Ecuador (Imbabura, Pichincha and Manabí) and Peru (Piura).
Additionally, as indirect beneficiaries, researches, students, and other agents in the value chain of the project fruits in each country are identified.
- Universidad Nacional de Colombia (UNAL) - Colombia
- AKIS - España
- Frutierrez Latinamerican Perishables Inc. (FLP) - Colombia
- Instituto Interamericano de Cooperación para la Agricultura (IICA) - Ecuador
- Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Agropecuarias (INIAP) - Ecuador
- SENA - Colombia
- Frutierrez Latinamerican Perishables Inc. (FLP) - Perú
- Frutierrez Latinamerican Perishables Inc. (FLP) - Ecuador