Gulupa production is replacing coca production in Colombian fields, not as a direct substitute but as a legal alternative that has important and prosperous revenues, which is an incentive for farmers to stop growing plant products that are used for illegal purposes.
The Gulupa is an emerging product that is totally open to the international market, as producers started to plant it in recent years and are learning about the requirements of the international market. According to Santiago Mosquera, of Practical Colombia, "most of the Gulupa production already has Global Gap certifications. Thus, we project that we'll be able to export 85% of the 17 tons of Gulupa that are produced per week until mid-January."
"This production started in the region of Belleza in Santander, a red zone (highly hit by violence and war) in which there was almost no employment and the existing one was deficient, young people had to migrate to cities or other places in search of better opportunities, now thanks to the peace treaty and demobilizations of the guerrillas, they can stay in their town and become small agricultural entrepreneurs, which are the engine of this project."
There has been a 60% increase in Gulupa crops compared to last year in the northern region of the country where they are working, "thanks mainly to the excellent prices of this fruit and its great international potential," said Mosquera.
"Currently, there are about 30,000 plants sown throughout the northern region. In general terms, the Gulupa has a constant production throughout the year, but production peaks from June to January and it can reach around 17 tons per week," he said.
The Gulupa is a type of Passion Fruit. It is purple and differs from the yellow passion fruit mainly because of its size, which is smaller than that of the granadilla, and its sweetness. Its main markets are Canada and Europe.
A company committed to the region
Practical Colombia is a local company that is directly committed to the region, as one of its partners has a very close relationship with the producers and people of the community. "We provide them with technical support, assistance in the acquisition of efficient technologies and directly market their products based on fair trade; they are the ones that define prices and the way to negotiate," Mosquera said.
"The ultimate goal of this alliance is to connect all the producers in this region, which was hit hard by the war and drug trafficking, with the international market. We want to be the bridge that unites this area's potential with all the clients in the world that want to try the Gulupa and want to learn about the great work that the producers are developing in this new legal business," he stated.
For more information:
Santiago Mosquera Calvache
Cel: +57 319 496 5735