There are several food products with the potential to be produced again in the territory, thanks to its edaphoclimatic peculiarities.
Quinoa is called a superfood, with a high tolerance to water stress in rainfed areas. The INIA Base Seed Bank in Vicuña has a collection of 203 accessions of quinoa from all over Chile. The ancestral cultivation of quinoa in the Coquimbo Region dates back to at least 400 years ago. (CEAZA)
The papaya grown in the Coquimbo Region is native. In Chile, 220 hectares are cultivated, of which 70% are in the Region, and 50% in the La Serena Commune (FIA). It is characterized by its presence of vitamin A, C, lycopene, fiber, digestive and healing properties. Its consumption is associated with pulps, juices, preserves and sweets.
The copao is a native cactus species of the Coquimbo Region, with potential as fresh or processed fruit (juices, liqueurs, pastries). A production capacity of 7,500 tons is estimated during the summer period in an area of 430,000 hectares (FIA). It is recognized as the superfood of the desert, with the same amount of potassium as a banana and hydration as a coconut, with great anti-inflammatory power and high content of Vitamin C.
Figs are recognized as delicatessen foods as preserves or as an accompaniment to bread, which provide energy, minerals and fiber, to the point of being suggested by the FAO for consumption, in addition to their contribution to cholesterol control and the presence of Omega 3 and 6.
Peas contain approximately 78% water, with 5% to 6% protein and 15% to 20% starch, with a good contribution of dietary fiber, 5-6% (USDA, 2016), adaptable to areas with hydric stress.
Territorial profile support:
See productive profile of the region (ODEPA, 2018): Click here
See Agenda for Territorial Agrarian Innovation in the Coquimbo Region (FIA, 2017): Click here
The Coquimbo Region is the only Mediterranean biome territory in South America, which is against the season of the large Mediterranean food production centers in Europe, offering highly differentiated Mediterranean food supplies in periods of international scarcity.
The Coquimbo region exported US $ 557.2 million FOB in 2018, of which 3.3% were processed fruits (US $ 18.5 million FOB) and 1.5% wines and alcohols (US $ 8.3 million FOB).
The olive oil production in Chile reached 22,000 tons (ChileOliva). It is estimated that the Coquimbo Region produces 17% of the national total, the 4th highest (CIREN, ODEPA, 2018). The regional cultivated area of olive trees grew from 3,719.5 Ha in 2015 to 3,904 Ha in 2018 (ODEPA). Studies show that the oleic acid in olive oil produced in the territory is between 78% and 80%, higher than the regional standard, which is 75% (Seremi Agriculture).
63.5 MM liters of wines with Denomination of Origin (ODEPA) are produced in the region. At the level of cultivation, the Syrah variety stands out in the reds (520 Ha) and the Chardonnay in the white wines (732.5 Ha).
The region concentrates 95% of the pisco vine surface, fundamental for the pisco industry. Thus, the territory is home to the oldest active pisco in Chile (Fundo Los Nichos), and the largest Pisco Cooperative in the country (CAPEL, with +1000 members). The region has the Ruta del Pisco (Pisco route) as one of its main attractions.
Considering the levels of fruit and vegetable production and heritage rescue products, the Coquimbo Region has the capacity to host industries for the productive sophistication of highly differentiated foods.
In the Region, +14,000 TONs are generated per year of residual biomass from certified plants, with the potential to add value as a functional ingredient, specialized additive and even a food supplement.
Algae: 1,886 TON – Carotenoids and pigments, input for hygiene and personal care products, home care, bio inputs such as fertilizers.
Mollusks: 7,884 TON – biofertilizer inputs, supplements for animal feed.
Crustaceans: 3,442 TON – To obtain chitin, chitosan, and extracts and aromas of crustaceans.
Fish: 1,067 TON – Fatty acids (Omega 3, EPA / DHA), enzymes, calcium, collagen.
The management area and value chain of the demersal crustacean fisheries of the Coquimbo Region (nylon shrimp, yellow shrimp and red shrimp) is certified for its sustainability with the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) Certification, the most prestigious in wild fishing worldwide.
Agriculture is one of the pillars of the regional development of Coquimbo. However, agriculture is migrating to be a technology-based industry, which is mobilizing resources from specialized investment funds towards two new areas of innovation in the development of services: agriculture and food technology. Some of these new areas of innovation in specialized services are:
Smart farms – Precision agriculture – Agricultural systems and machinery – Vertical agriculture – Crop efficiency technologies – Satellites and drones – Internet of things – Agroindustrial technological sophistication – Waste revaluation – Cloud management technologies – Traceability and transparency (Blockchain ) – Smart logistics & E-commerce.