Venezuela's Seeds of Revolution

In the rural community of Mucuchies in Merida state, Venezuelan farmers are taking control of the seed producing process.

By Venezuelanalysis

dscf9901e.jpg

Inside one of the two greenhouses at the Proinpa cooperative. (Tamara Pearson/Venezuelanalysis)
Inside one of the two greenhouses at the Proinpa cooperative. (Tamara Pearson/Venezuelanalysis)

img_3242.jpg

(Ryan Mallett-Outtrim/Venezuelanalysis)
(Ryan Mallett-Outtrim/Venezuelanalysis)

dscf9899.jpg

Potatoes being planted near Proinpa with seed potatoes grown by the cooperative. (Tamara Pearson/Venezuelanalysis)
Potatoes being planted near Proinpa with seed potatoes grown by the cooperative. (Tamara Pearson/Venezuelanalysis)

dscf9902e.jpg

The cooperative is also experimenting with producing quinoa. (Tamara Pearson/Venezuelanalysis)
The cooperative is also experimenting with producing quinoa. (Tamara Pearson/Venezuelanalysis)

img_3247.jpg

Quinoa isn't native to Merida state, though it grows in other parts of the Andes in Ecuador, Bolivia, Colombia and Peru. (Ryan Mallett-Outtrim/Venezuelanalysis)
Quinoa isn't native to Merida state, though it grows in other parts of the Andes in Ecuador, Bolivia, Colombia and Peru. (Ryan Mallett-Outtrim/Venezuelanalysis)

dscf9898.jpg

The seed bank in Mucuchies. (Tamara Pearson/Venezuelanalysis)
The seed bank in Mucuchies. (Tamara Pearson/Venezuelanalysis)

img_3241.jpg

The 2013 AVSN brigade to Venezuela visited the cooperative on 11 December. (Ryan Mallett-Outtrim/Venezuelanalysis)
The 2013 AVSN brigade to Venezuela visited the cooperative on 11 December. (Ryan Mallett-Outtrim/Venezuelanalysis)

Ten minutes down a dusty road out of Mucuchies at the Proinpa cooperative, farmers are growing a unique crop of seed potatoes. They are growing seedlings obtained from a seed bank in town run by local producers. The seed bank is located in an agro-ecological school near the town centre, and is also run by producers. The project is part of a national push to promote domestic production of seeds, and rehabilitate native crops. The initiative is still embryonic at a national level, but in Mucuchies 80 producers have joined the cooperative since it was launched 14 years ago; and even more benefit directly from its work. Proinpa sells its seed potatoes directly to farmers in the area at solidarity prices, and also encourages the use of organic farming practices, though chemicals are still used as a last resort. The cooperative is only supplying farmers in the area.

12 different varieties of potato are currently being produced, including some that are indigenous to Merida state.

Members of the cooperative told VA the project wouldn't be possible without funding from the national government.

Short URL

Contributions as of 12/02/2020

$10,000
22.0% $2,200

Let Venezuela breathe!
Support the only independent English media outlet working on-the-ground in Venezuela!

Donate now