Llamas, Quinoa, and Andean Food Sovereignty

Drastic variations in the land and climate—ranging from tropical jungles and subtropical cloud forests to the vast arid plains of the Altiplano—make Bolivian agriculture truly remarkable. Before the arrival of the Spanish in 1531, the communities of the Incan Empire developed sophisticated skills for producing food in this diverse environment. Andean farmers maintained fields at different elevations, taking advantage of a wide range of microclimates. Collectively managed raised beds and terraces sustained over 15 million people with an abundance of grains, roots, legumes, vegetables, fruits and nuts. In January 2009, Bolivia became the fifth country to formally adopt the concept of “food sovereignty” into its national constitution. On a Food Sovereignty Tour of Bolivia, you will meet with farming communities, NGOs, educators and policy-makers working to confront the challenges of poverty and climate change and make food sovereignty a reality.