Medicinal Plants of the Amazon

Since my short time here in the Ecuadorian Amazon began, I have been completely and utterly blown away by the endless array of medicine that people pull from the forest here. It seems that every Kichwa person I have been in the jungle with, whether an old man or a child, knows exactly which plants can be used for which ailments. I had a small cut, that was getting infected with the constant river dips

Farmer Story: A couple who planted 6,500 guayusa trees

  Guayusa-farmer Manuel Narvaez Andy, his wife Esthella and their four young boys live in the Kichwa community of Mushullakta, Napo-province.   “We have been selling guayusa for five years now”, Manuel reveals. “Last year, Esthella and I sold 400 pounds of fresh leaves to RunaTarpuna”.   Manuel and Esthella own a chakra of 30 hectares. Apart from their 6,500 trees of guayusa, they grow a large variety of different plants in their agroforestry system,

Monitoring the Contribution of Agroforestry Systems to Biodiversity Conservation

A renowned professor of Tropical Forestry and expert on agroforestry systems at Yale University, Dr. Florencia Montagnini is teaming up with Runa Foundation to lead our new research on how growing guayusa in agroforestry systems helps to sustain biodiversity.   In Agroforestry and Biodiversity Conservation in Tropical Landscapes, Agroforestry is defined as “a dynamic, ecologically based natural resource management practice that, through the integration of trees and other tall woody plants on farms and in

Mixed planting of trees and short-cycle crops increases productivity and ensures successful land restoration

  Rotating agroforestry fund set to finance forest restoration within buffer zone of Sumaco Napo-Galeras National Park by pairing tree planting with agricultural micro-loans to guayusa farmers.   Napo, Ecuador. -  “Restoration is not quite the same as reforestation”, explains program director Sydney Nilan as we arrive to Mushullakta, a Kichwa-community in Napo-province. “In restoration, your main goal is to recover the ecological integrity of degraded land, we want to restore a forest-like structure and

Proceso de Certificación Orgánica

Después de veinte minutos en un camino lleno de piedras y con la vista más preciosa a la cordiller de los andes cubierta de selva, llegamos a el pueblo de Puna Ishpingo. Ishpingo es el árbol amazónico que produce un aroma similar al de la canela comercial. Se preguntarán, bueno que tiene de especial esta canela amazónica ? Lo mismo me preguntaba yo hasta que llegamos a un árbol de 15 años de edad y

5 May 2017

24 de Mayo, The 1st Kichwa Owned Guayusa Processing Facility

  In an effort to increase indigenous ownership over the guayusa value chain, Runa Foundation has been working with the guyausa producers association from the community of 24 de Mayo to establish the world’s first Kichwa owned and operated guayusa processing facility. Retrofitting existing community infrastructure for the new facility began in February of this year and is scheduled for completion later this summer. Meanwhile, over the last 6 months there have been a series of