Improving the Quinoa Value Chain in Puno as a Model for Sustainable Development

In the period 2005-2014 there was a sustained increase in both the amount of land used for quinoa production, and production itself in Peru. Cultivated areas increased by 250% as Peruvian quinoa was recognised by the market for its nutritional value, adaptability to different climate zones and its potential for industrial-scale cultivation.

This constitutes a warning of the need for competitive development models to differentiate organic quinoa from the Peruvian Andes and to strengthen the skills of agents in the production chain, to improve business margins in conditions of fairness. Puno is an emblematic case as its production is highly specialised, with different varieties for different niche markets.

Although the value chain has great economic and social potential, quinoa production still faces considerable challenges, and organic production even more so; producers cooperatives and MIPYME face a number of problems:

  • there is little technological innovation in crop management;
  • inadequate production standardisation;
  • absence of specialist technical and business development services;
  • a weak financial culture and poor knowledge of alternative markets;
  • atomisation of production and little contact between producers.

The Project

Help to improve the competitiveness of the value chains of Andean cereals and the farm sector in southern Peru by developing models for facilitating financial and non-financial services that improve productivity and export business skills, strengthen the agents of the organic quinoa production chain and promote the different varieties grown in Puno.

The business development services to be promoted include: The use of technology in harvesting, post-harvest handling, product development and marketing, in order to differentiate the product and improve commercial contacts with trading and export companies.

The project will also seek to expand the supply of financial services through microleasing and working capital loans, multiplying access to inputs and assets that will improve the efficiency of the production process, such as seeds, fertiliser and equipment. We also plan to strengthen institutions in the value chain by supporting the Puno Regional Technical Forum for Quinoa.


  • 1,800 small and medium-sized family farms in the quinoa value chain will increase their net incomes by at least 15%.
  • A 15% increase in productivity per hectare and in sales of quinoa from the area covered by the project.
  • Design and validation of a micro-leasing financial product for quinoa.
  • Validation of an "organic quinoa production technology package" and production of certified seed.
  • 30% increase in loans to savings and loan cooperatives to be used for production purposes.
  • 30 jobs created and/or improved in the value chain.

Project countries

  • Peru

Project duration

2016 - 2017


  • Helvetas (managing SECO funds - Programa de Apoyo a la Agenda de Competitividad 2014-2018)

Working area


Swiss Foundation for Technical Cooperation
Hardturmstrasse 123
CH-8005 Zurich

Tel. +41 44 454 17 17
Fax +41 44 454 17 97