The road from Los Reyes to Charapan Orgánico, the Álvarez family’s plantation of organic strawberries and avocados, is five kilometres long. Actually, it’s not a road, it’s Paris Dakar.
We look out across the landscape and can see the avocado trees belonging to the ranch. On the other side of the mountains is the strawberry plantation.
Antonio Alvarez invites us to lunch in Charapan, a community in north-western Mexico in the state of Michoacan. It’s his native village and the place where he grew up, and he’s proud that many of the villagers have found work on the strawberry and avocado plantation that he runs with his two brothers and his father. They have eight hectares of organic strawberries and six hectares of avocados.
They started farming conventionally but were eager to switch to organic. Experts said that would not be possible in this location, in this soil, in this climate, but they made a success of it. Not without setbacks and difficulties, but they succeeded. Antonio is keen to tell us all about it, not here but this afternoon, on the farm. First we must eat and then wander through the village with its centuries-old wooden houses.
"Almost 35 years went by before we could start developing a different kind of agriculture."
"Experts said that it would not be possible in this location, in this soil, in this climate, but we made a success of it. Not without setbacks and difficulties, but we succeeded. "
Antonio Alvarez Naranjo
"We decided to do it differently, more like precautionary agriculture."
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