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Biocultural Heritage: Quinoa as an important resource to be maintained through tourism experiences for food security in the face of climate change

Bazile D., Martinez E.A., Negrete Sepulveda J., Thomet M., Chia E., Hocdé H., Nuñez L.. 2014. Tourism, Leisure and Global Change, 1 : 16 p..

The regions in Chile where quinoa is grown share certain features, namely the marginality of farmers, cultural and geographic isolation, and long distances to markets. Yet there is an increasing global awareness of quinoa's high nutritional value and the heritage value of its biodiversity. This research aimed to develop a sustainable alternative to traditional agriculture through rural tourism that highlights the value of local landrace diversity and associated farming practices. The FAO recognizes the important contribution of generations of farmers in shaping agricultural landscapes whose cultural and agricultural components jointly reflect the evolution of local farming systems. The world heritage value of this agricultural diversity renders agrotourism a relevant approach to its conservation. We studied three regions in Chile where attempts to associate tourism and quinoa are underway: Aymaras communities on the northern Highlands, farming communities of Spanish descent in the centre, and Mapuche farmers in the south. The agrotourism form mobilized in each region is analyzed strategically by combining the study of tourism supply and demand. The three approaches to preserving the heritage of the quinoa crop in Chile are adapted to specific local contexts and territories. Whether it is to define a hiking trail in the North, entice tourists off established tourist circuits in the centre, or to develop a new endogenous tourism economy among the Mapuche, agrotourism takes different forms where the maintenance of quinoa's agricultural heritage allows relations between farming and tourism activities, market and non-market goods, and cultural and natural goods to be explored.

Mots-clés : chenopodium quinoa; tourisme; développement durable; communauté rurale; agriculteur; zone rurale; changement climatique; sécurité alimentaire; projet de développement; chili

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