Mauricio Isla

Agrícola Austral

Hi, my name is Mauricio Isla of Agricola Austral and I grow organic ginger and avocado in the jungle of Peru for Nature & More. We are a family business with ten years of experience and we want to thank you for buying our organic ginger and avocado!

Agrícola Austral started ten years ago, when we purchased a farm in Piura, in the North of Peru, and started growing mangos and lemons. This region is warm all year long due to its proximity to the Equator, which makes it the ideal place to grow our mangos and lemons! The following years we wanted to explore opportunities and grow new products. That is how we started to produce avocados, strawberries ginger and turmeric. Since Austral is a family business, we try to get everyone involved: my parents, my sister, my wife and employees are dedicated to the field and assist the associated producers.

About two years ago, we started growing ginger and turmeric in the Junín region, which is about 10 hours by car from the city of Lima. It is a tropical area with incredible landscapes and climate and a very friendly and cheerful population. The ginger in this area has a special flavor, very intense and delicious. In the past, these areas suffered a lot due to terrorism and the presence of drug trafficking. Nowadays, the development of new crops and the export of many of these products has generated new economic opportunities and development, leaving bad times behind and new opportunities to the future.

Interview with Mauricio

What do you see as the benefits of organic farming now?
Mauricio: Back in 2016, when we started exporting ginger, we decided to get the organic certification and we put special effort in convincing producers that organic was not only a trend, but it was also the way to ensure the future of them, their families and their homes, preserving the soil, water and animals. The benefits of organic agriculture are many, it goes from taking care of the consumer by giving them healthy products free of chemical residues to the preservation of the soil, the insects, the surrounding flora and fauna. Everything works like a big chain.

Is there something that every consumer should know about you or your farm?
Mauricio: Perhaps the most important thing that the customer should know about our fields is that behind every pound of ginger or turmeric, there is an effort that takes more than 14 months, from sowing until it is in the hands of the final customer. It is a whole natural process, organic and respectful of the environment and local traditions. And that is in addition to the development that generates the export, being that, from planting to boarding, there are more than 70 people involved in the process for each container. Nowadays, many families rely on the income that the export activity brings to them, to be able to live in good conditions.

What do you like most about your work?
Mauricio: Without a doubt, I would say the interaction with people is the most valuable thing. Having a job like mine gives you the opportunity to visit the different areas of the country, to get to know the different realities, geography and landscapes. At the same time, it allows me to spend some time with them, to show them the enormous benefits that this can bring and to drive the change to the conversion of crops to organic. At Agrícola Austral we are also busy with the conversion of our mango and lemon crops into organic: they are currently handled the conventional way and we are hoping that the transition to organic crops will take us the next two years.

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Geolocation is -9.189967, -75.015152

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