Inagrofa

Inagrofa started in 1989 to buy, process and sell quinoa in Ecuador.

Its founder Rodrigo Arroyo was convinced that quinoa would become a major food crop due to its nutritional qualities. Arroyo had to wait until 2005 when, because of increased export, quinoa sales really began to take off. Over a decade, the production of quinoa in Bolivia grew 40 times reaching 100,000 ha. From 2006 to 2011, the price of quinoa tripled to USD 3,200 a ton thanks to increased international demand. The price has climbed quickly as the supply of quinoa remains fairly limited; quinoa is mostly produced in Bolivia and Peru, with Ecuador and Colombia being much smaller producers.

Since 2009, Inagrofa has worked with the support of the USAID program Prodel to develop a value chain with farmers of small holdings. Inagrofa works closely with 25 big plantations ranging from 10 to 60 ha as well as smaller farmers. These farmers work either independently on one or two hectares, or in associations that join their production of quinoa. For example, an association of 80 small farmers owning 20 ha all together produces 4 ha of quinoa.

In the 2014-2015 season, Inagrofa has exported 780 MT of quinoa. In 2015 Inagrofa has invested in a new processing facility. It plans to work with more quinoa producers for the 2015-2016 season with 1,000 MT to be exported.