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Açai (Euterpe oleracea) in the Amazon: until when a non-timber forest product?

Diniz J., Cialdella N.. 2019. Pesquisa Florestal Brasileira, 39 : p. 466-466. IUFRO World Congress 2019 "Forest Research and Cooperation for Sustainable Development". 25, 2019-09-29/2019-10-05, Curitiba (Brésil).

Until the 1990s the açai was a product basically of local consumption in the states or the Brazilian Amazon, being even known as "food of the poor ". Since then, following the expansion of its market, the exploitation or this fruit has undergone numerous transformations. Nowadays. besides being nationally known, it also has its demand expanded in the international markets, being considered now as a superfood. Such increase in demand has consequently influenced an increase in consumer prices and in most cases in the remuneration of extractivists, originally the exclusive suppliers of the fruit. The increase in supply has been due to the multiplication and diversification or actors in the chain, as well as the diversification of management and production practices (native acai trees densification, increase or monoculture or consortium plantations), depending on the economic context of the producing region, proximity to the industry and time in the activity of the primary suppliers. These changes can also bring vulnerability to more traditional forms and with smaller scale of production. Considering the trajectory or other extractive products that had their demands increased and, in order to meet them, had to identify substitutes, or to change the type or production system, this paper discusses, from recent data, if the main form of açai offer in the future will still remain through extraction or through cultivation systems. The paper also discusses what forms of market regulation and maintenance of traditional practices could guarantee the permanence of diversified and more sustainable systems.

Mots-clés : euterpe oleracea; fruits tropicaux; marché mondial; prix à la consommation; plantation; petite exploitation agricole; secteur agroindustriel; brésil; amazonie; vulnérabilité

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