The Galapagos archipelago, located about a thousand kilometers away from the Ecuadorian continental coasts, seeks to be self-sustainable in agricultural production, the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAG) reported on Tuesday.
It works for it in a proposal to increase its agricultural production, in order to maintain the supply to its approximately 30,000 inhabitants, who are dedicated, for the most part, to tourism and agricultural activities, and demand about 1,300 tons of food per month.
It is estimated that in the Galapagos Islands – declared Natural Heritage of Humanity by Unesco – there are 24,000 hectares for agricultural use, of which 14,000 are currently in effective production, producing around 600 tons per month, the Ministry said in a statement. .
According to Jimmy Bolaños, district director of the MAG in the Galapagos, the islands currently have production of proteins of animal origin, mainly from cattle (free of FMD without vaccination), meat, milk and dairy products, such as cheese and yogurt, in addition to pigs and poultry.
“In the agricultural part,” he said, “Galapagos is distinguished by having a coffee with a designation of origin, which is why it is desired in international markets due to the climatic conditions in which the crop develops.”
But it also has strategic crops where the production of cassava, plantain, corn, tomato, pepper, cucumber, pineapple, and different types of vegetables and fruits stand out.
To increase this production, the District MAG Directorate, together with entities such as the Governing Council of the Special Regime of Galapagos (CGREG), the parish and municipal governments, non-governmental organizations and various entities are working on a proposal that will require an investment of 1 , 5 million dollars.
This is intended to intervene in 5,000 hectares and increase production by 200 tons per month, reaching a total of 800 monthly.
The proposal includes technifying agriculture, providing it with inputs and seeds; generate family gardens in the urban sector and community gardens; build infrastructure for the collection, storage and distribution of water for irrigation, among others.
“Agriculture is an ally of conservation, since it is produced with environmentally friendly practices for the generation of healthy food for the local and tourist population,” said the district director.
Due to the health emergency of COVID-19, together with the CGREG, the parish and municipal governments, non-governmental organizations such as Conservación Internacional, Heifer Ecuador and Island Conservation, the MAG provides technical assistance in the field, with the respective biosecurity measures.
They also supported with more than twenty disinfection brigades in areas for public use; the transfer from the countryside to the city of one hundred tons of products from seventy farmers; and the provision of protective equipment to producers in the territory.
In addition, the delivery of 29 motorized pumps, and management for the delivery of seventy motorized scythes, ten greenhouses, supplies and seeds for producers in the San Cristóbal canton, thanks to management with Heifer Ecuador, and the delivery of tankers was coordinated with eight local entities. of water to more than one hundred producers.