In Bolivia one of Unicorn’s Quinoa suppliers, ‘DO-IT’, participates in a seed swap project with Bolivian company QuinoaBol and the Anapqui cooperative in the Altiplano highlands. In the southwest region of Bolivia where Anaqui co-operative is based, seed swapping of indigenous varieties is vital in supporting local farmers. Indigenous varieties are better resistant to pests and guarantee healthy harvests as well as a higher nutritional content and a better balance of amino acids.
Thanks to a strong relationship with many farmers in the region QuionaBol also promotes Organic conversion and Fairtrading amongst farmers to achieve better returns for their produce. A new joint venture between the two organisations also encourages farmers to take responsibility for the finished product by cleaning, drying and packing in an exclusive facility in Altiplano. The net result of this being better returns for producers and expansion of their product range. For example Anapqui co-operative are planning to expand their product line with the world’s first Fairtrade certified Quinoa Vodka; FAIR Vodka to be available in the UK in 2010.