The commune of Paillaco in the province of Valdivia, in the Chilean region of Los Ríos, has a population of 20,000 and a strong agricultural sector. Fields of cereal and fodder crops alternate with wooded areas, which cover 20% of the commune’s surface area.
The Paillaco Earth Market is the result of several years’ work. The local Slow Food convivium first brought in agronomists who trained producers about agroecological production techniques and seed management. This training allowed production quality to be improved and crops to be diversified.
The market has been started by 22 producers (21 women and one man), all residents in the commune of Paillaco and members of different organizations of food producers. As well as vegetables, fruit, jams and preserves, market shoppers can also find typical alcoholic beverages like chicha and muday (made from fermented fruit or grains), foods from the surrounding woods (like mushrooms, maqui berries and a type of myrtle known as ugni), breads and other baked goods, flours milled from local grains, coffee, poultry and eggs from Mapuche hens.
The Slow Food convivium organizes tasting activities with local products like organic spinach pies, mushrooms and quince cider.
Los Rios Region
The Paillaco Earth Market is held monthly, on the last Wednesday of the month.
At the junction between O’Higgins and Barros Aranas, in front of the Plaza de la República, Paillaco.
Raúl Quinteros Opazo
Leader of the Slow Food Valdivia Convivium