Agroecology and food systems

Agriculture and fishing are some of the most primitive activities of human beings so they have always kept a close relationship in their development. This activity plays a crucial role in the socioeconomic growth of the country as it represents an important source of employment, the contribution to national income, food for people and animals, an agent for Ecuador’s exports and allows the reduction of imports since post-colonial times. Consequently, the development of the agricultural sector also contributes to other countries’ productive sectors.

According to data from the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Aquaculture and Fisheries of Ecuador, the agricultural sector contributes approximately 30% of national employment and fishing approximately 8%. In addition, an interesting fact is that more than 60% of Ecuadorian women in rural areas work in the fields or production lines on farms.

The cultivation of bananas, coffee, cocoa and flowers along with fishing for tuna and shrimp have been the principal traditional export products during the decades of 1968 to 2008. However, during the past two decades, exportations also included newer and more industrialized products such as canned fruits, vegetables and seafood, vegetable fats, chocolate bars and packed local cereals such as quinoa.

However, human growth and other challenges such as climate change have caused impacts in social, economic and natural systems worldwide and communities now look for the best management of their food sovereignty and as a result, new practices in agriculture activity reach the surface through agroecology, which stipulates a responsible use of natural resources such as water, soil, energy and waste management are an important component of the program.

Activities and contents related to cultivation techniques, agricultural development in the different regions and the analysis of the impacts this industry has on a social, environmental and economic level.

Agricultural and fishing programs cover different specialties of agricultural sciences such as agronomy, animal production, rural development and agribusiness could take part in the program’s focus, according to your main interests. In the Galapagos islands a special focus on better understanding the dynamics of “artisanal fishing and industrial fishing” is a great option for sustainable related careers that are in line with eco-social development and natural protected areas management.

Range of activities: 

  • Agroecology practices in the Andes region with iconic food products such as quinoa, corn, potatoes, amaranth, etc. 
  • Artisanal fishing and sustainable fishing practices vs industrial practices
  • Banana & cocoa plantations
  • Shrimp & fisheries farms
  • Organic coffee farms
  • Organic chocolate industry