ETHICAL ISSUES AND MACA
Do you know if your maca is ethically produced?
Choosing ethically produced maca is essential for your health and the lives of the people growing it.
From the Chinese mafia to farmers being forced into poverty, it's important to be aware of the many ethical issues surrounding the production of maca and learn how to choose ethically produced maca.
Maca is a heritage crop in Peru and it is illegal to remove the fresh root and seeds from the country without the approval of the Peruvian government.
The Red Triad mafia came to Peru and started stealing maca crops.
They exported these crops to China, where it is being illegally grown.
Chinese maca is grown at lower altitudes and is farmed with heavy amounts of pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides because the conditions are not suitable for sustainable maca farming.
It also contains much higher levels of heavy metals.
Due to improper drying and growing conditions, it does not form adequate levels of beneficial bioactive constituents.
DRIVING UP THE PRICE
The distortion caused by the Chinese mafia caused the price of this staple food to dramatically increase for the people living there.
The farmers did not benefit, the mafia, and middlemen who purchased the stolen maca, and illegal Chinese farms reaped the profits.
Chinese maca is often repackaged and illegally sold as Peruvian maca.
A large percentage of maca products on the market are Chinese maca even though they are not labeled as such.
This has driven down the price many Peruvian farmers get for their maca, further increasing poverty.
While this has reduced the price of maca for the local population, it increased problems for the farmers.
This has also caused many people to leave the farms or sell their farmland.
It's important that farmers are paid a fair price for their crops so that they can live a life of dignity, farmland can be protected, and farmers can stay on their land.
So how can you ensure that your maca is ethically produced?
There are several things you can do.
Buy maca from companies that get their maca directly from the farm.
This eliminates the middleman, where most of the problems are created, and usually means the farmer was paid a much higher price for their crops.
Even better, buy maca from companies that are a farm partnership, and form a vertically integrated partnership.
This means that the farmer and the company work hand and hand.
The company only uses maca from their farm partner.
This ensures fair pay for the farmer and that the company gets the best quality maca because every facet of the growing and production is done in-house and is 100% traceable and verified.
Our maca comes directly from a single family farm in Peru. It is a vertically integrated partnership between the farmer and the finished product company.
It does not get more traceable and transparent.
The farmers are paid significantly higher amounts for their maca than they would get on the open market.
In addition, for each bag sold, a portion of the profits is used to support the local community.
To learn more about our farmers, click here.
To learn more about the finished product company, click here.
TO LEARN MORE
Check out the paper below to see an in-depth explanation of the harms that have been done to the local people, farmers, and the environment, from the growth of unethically obtained and produced maca.