Climate change resilience via production that preserves biocultural heritage
This climate resilience case study (No.2) from Ecuador is the second of ten case studies prepared by forest and farm producer organisations (FFPOs) for the Forest and Farm Facility (FFF). It describes the actions of Artisanal Producers Association of Agricultural and Livestock Goods of Napo – KALLARI in finding nature based solutions (NbS) that give climate resilience.
The Napo Province of the Ecuadorian Amazon is home to Indigenous Kichwa communities. The cultural heritage of these communities includes highly complex agroforestry production systems known as ‘Chakra’ that incorporate cash crops such as cocoa, vanilla, coffee and guayusa alongside subsistence cassava, banana, corn beans and peanuts and a host of medicinal, craft and cosmetic plants. More intense wet season rains that erode soils and dry season droughts that stress plants and allow incursions of pest and disease are early signs of climate change. In Napo, KALLARI has been helping to ensure community-based adaptation (CbA) by developing the KALLARI brand to stand for the hyper-diverse ‘chakra’ system with all its associated cultural heritage – and diversifying value chains into many types of chocolate product, vanilla and Guyausa. This economic diversification incentivises the protection of ecologically diverse agroforestry systems that are most resistant to climate change. The case study shows how organizational innovations in product development and marketing can render many diverse smallholdings both profitable and climate resilient.