PGS Trainings Drive Mountain Products Labelling in Peru and Bolivia

This article was originally published by the Mountain Partnership Secretariat.

The Mountain Partnership Secretariat (MPS), in collaboration with IFOAM – Organics International, successfully conducted Participatory Guarantee Systems (PGS) trainings and delivered Mountain Partnership Product (MPP) labels in Peru and Bolivia, benefiting a total of 81 producers, including 54 women.

The MPP Initiative is a certification and labelling scheme that promotes local value chains, using narrative labels developed in collaboration with Slow Food to inform consumers about product origins, cultivation, processing, preservation methods, nutritional value and local cultural significance. To date, 45 products have been granted the MPP narrative label.

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Recognising the importance of smallholder agriculture and family farming in global food production and sustainable food systems, the MPS and IFOAM - Organics International have been working to provide innovative and cost-efficient certification system trainings to support smallholders in the organic sector and prevent their marginalisation.

The PGS approach is a more accessible and suitable alternative to individual third-party certification of organic products. Adopting PGS allows producers to make organic claims, benefit from organic integrity and market recognition, and access different markets by linking with third-party certification when needed.

The PGS Training Sessions!

In Peru, the PGS trainings took place in the mountainous regions of Ancash and Huánuco, involving four producer organisations engaged in agroecological practices and preserving ancestral customs: Asociación de Guardianes de Papa Nativa del Perú (AGUAPAN), Asociacion de Productores Ecologico de Ajia (APEA), the Comunidad Campesina de Tian Ayllu, Agroindustrias Ordoñez and the Cooperativa Agraria de Productores Agroecológicos Umari - AGRECU.

These producers cultivate the mountain products of Granadilla, Papas nativas de colores, Harina de Trigo de la Cordillera Negra, Tarwi Cholo Fuerte in the Aija, La Merced and Umari districts, ranging from 3,000 to 4,200 metres above sea level.

RAE Peru technicians guided producers throughout their agroecological journey, supporting PGS implementation and adoption of agroecological practices during production, harvest and post-harvest stages.

These collaborative efforts have been instrumental in empowering smallholders and family farmers to embrace sustainable farming practices. It not only improves their livelihoods but also contributes to the preservation of natural resources.

Antonieta Manrique
RAE Peru Focal Point


In Bolivia, ecological producers in Taquiña, Tirani, Pacolla, and District 9 of Cercado province transitioned from conventional production to organic cultivation of vegetables, fruits, tubers and medicinal herbs. Four Bolivian mountain products have been identified for their characteristics linked to traditional agroecological production practices and role in local culture: Api de maiz morado, Pop de amaranto, Muña, Quilquiña with Tomate Corazon de buey for the traditional salad Ckallu.

Technical support from AGRECOL Andes contributed to this positive change.

We are thrilled about the Mountain Partnership's commitment to empowering farmers which aligns with our organisation's mission to promote sustainable agriculture and protect the environment. The MPP labels are already used in several food shops and outlets.

German Jarro
Executive Director of AGRECOL Andes

The establishment of the new PGS group in Bolivia called Mi Llajta, along with the increase of producers involved in existing PGS and the strengthening of existing PGS councils, has created new opportunities for smallholder farmers to obtain organic certification and gain market access.

Additionally, the producer organisations in both countries signed the Ranikhet Declaration for a Global Mountain PGS Network, became partners of the MPP Initiative, and will continue to receive technical support from the MPS for marketing their products.

Learn more about the MPP products


How Slow Food and IFOAM - Organics International are Working Together to Support PGS Development

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