Tagua and the Amazon Rainforest – What’s the Story?

The Amazon Rainforest produces 25% of our planet’s oxygen and 80% of modern medicine. It’s a worldwide resource and treasure. Over the last 2 decades, there were two worldwide outcries about how the rainforest was disappearing at a rapid rate (1994 and 2004). There was some leaning on the governments of South America, there were some changes and the rate of clear cutting the rainforest slowed down. But the problem hasn’t gone away.

Here in Ecuador, a huge once- protected rainforest park, Yusani, has been opened to oil drilling and Ecuador has suddenly leaped to the front of the pack in terms of how much of the country’s rainforest is disappearing daily. Deforestation may not even be the most important thing to measure. Mining and oil drilling require large amounts of equipment to be moved along well graded roads. New roads always lead to more roads, more access, more logging, in a never ending cycle.

International political pressure only gets one so far. There has been a huge outcry against Correa’s Ecuadorian government not to open Yusani to oil drilling. Correa has pleaded the poverty of his people as his reason to allow it. And it’s very true that the Ecuadorian people need more access to social services and education. However, it’s also possible to increase the quality of life through sustainable use of what the rainforest already provides.

Enter Tagua. Tagua is a slow growing palm tree that grows wild in the Amazon Rainforest. It’s not often cultivated because it takes 15 years to start producing the pods that contain the valuable tagua. Local people can collect the pods without any damage to the trees and the trees can go on to produce semi-annual harvests for up to 40 years. Tagua is a solid cash crop and a tagua collector can earn more per acre than if the same land was used for farming. Through the purchase of tagua, consumers make choices that encourage good land utilization and forest management through sustainable harvesting.

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Eco Friendly

Many of our products support sustainable use of the Amazon Rainforest

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