Pitahaya cultivation in the region of Piura represents a new opportunity for producers and is emerging as a new means of diversifying agricultural production and expanding the exportable supply of agricultural products.
According to specialist Eduardo Pinedo, there are currently 15 hectares devoted to this crop, 3 in Tejedores, 6 in Milingas (San Lorenzo), 5 in Middle Piura, and 1 in Chacalala (Sullana). Ecuador, Colombia, and other Central American countries are leaders in pitahaya production and export. Peru has been producing it for several years in the region of San Martin.
According to Pinedo, the cities of Trujillo and Lima demand the most pitahaya in the country, and prices there stand at nearly 15 soles per kg.
The mayor of Sullana, Power Saldaña Sanchez, said that his commune will support a pilot project to promote this crop in the Chira valley, which will receive funding from the Agreoideas program, belonging to the Ministry of Agriculture, to promote the conversion of the agricultural sector. Through this program, 50 families have already received pitahaya cuttings so they can install the crop in 30 hectares.
Pinedo stressed that there were several initiatives to install this fruit in Peru, due to its high commercial value in the international and local markets, as well as for its nutritional value. It could be one of the fruits with the greatest potential for the country.
"There is a proposal to install 60 to 100 hectares of fruit in Chinecas, Chimbote. There are other initiatives in Trujillo (La Libertad) and Huaral (Lima) where they plan to plant some 60 hectares," he said.