March 11, 2017 4:52 pm Leave your thoughts
Quinola is a best-selling, premium range of organic quinoa – ‘the mothergrain’ from the Andes. We’ve stocked it for a number of years at Naturally Good Food and currently have it available in pearl packets and in Express Quinola microwaveable sachets.
We all know that quinoa is remarkably good for you. It’s a ‘complete protein’, with all seven essential amino acids, and is rich in phosphorus, magnesium, calcium and iron. It’s fantastic for vegetarians and vegans, as it really does replace the nutrients of meat and fish (something hardly any other plant does). We’ve got a particular soft spot for Quinola, because this is a company that takes quinoa to the next level, by concentrating on the issue of fairness in its production and packaging processes.
Quinola: a Fairtrade product
Quinola is a Fairtrade product. We’re currently in the middle of Fairtrade Fortnight, so it seemed a good time to refresh our memories about just what makes Quinola that bit more special.
‘As a consumer’, the Quinola website says, ‘when you buy a product you buy the world that goes with it’. The website notes that with the complexity of modern supply chains, it can be hard to ‘judge the implications of your purchase’. After all, you know you’ve bought the packet from a lovely, environmentally friendly and ethical business (Naturally Good Food!), but what happened before it reached our shelves?
The story starts in Peru
Quinola quinoa is sourced directly from the Cabana co-operative in Peru, located just north of Lake Titicaca. This co-operative is a group of about 500 farmers who, by pooling their resources, have managed to build a de-husking plant to process the quinoa straight from the fields, into the finished product. This cuts out the intermediate stage – the ‘squeeze’ by the middle-men – enabling the farmers to keep a larger share of the profits.
The farmers are paid fairly, through the Fairtrade mechanism, for their quinoa. In addition, they receive a Fairtrade premium, which allows them to make significant improvements to their lives, in areas such as education, health and transport facilities.
Quinola take things a step further still. They’re currently helping the co-operative to raise long-term finance with European financial institutions, to make their future more secure.
The story moves to France
Quinola leaves Peru and makes its way to France, where the products are packaged by adults with learning difficulties. As Quinola says, ‘productivity isn’t the highest, but the quality of the work is impeccable’.
The story ends at Naturally Good Food
Quinola is then transported to Naturally Good Food, where it rests (briefly) on our shelves before being sent out to you, the customer. We like to think that we’re an equally important part of this ‘fair’ supply chain, being committed ourselves to a sustainable way of working. See more about this here.
Tags: Express Quinola, Fairtrade Fortnight, fairtrade quinoa, luxury quinoa, microwave quinoa, premium quinoa, quinoa, Quinola
This post was written by Yzanne