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Rethinking agriculture: polyculture techniques

Around 10,000 years ago we, as species, began to master farming techniques for food production. More than just planting seeds, we lay the foundations for the development of our civilization; at the moment we were sedentary we began to create the communities where the rest of the arts and sciences would be developed.


The first revolution in agriculture was characterized as a stage of expansion and exploitation of the land at the expense of wildlife, forests, water, and the balance of the environment; becoming one of the industries with the highest greenhouse gas emissions. On the other hand, the demand for food continues to grow in parallel with the population increase. Currently, 40% of the planet’s surface is used for food production.


The traditional form of cultivation within the agro-industrial sector is characterized by being of the «monoculture» type, that is, large extensions of land are destined for a single type of plantation. Although this technique makes it easier for farmers to manage inputs, investment costs, and labor, it has led us to exploit the land and ecosystems.

The resources for agricultural production are increasingly limited, as are the areas with potential for this purpose. For this reason, it is necessary to increase the efficiency of the agricultural areas currently used, as well as to ensure their production capacity permanently.

 Under these objectives, in 1980 a new way of managing farmland formally gave rise to the revolutionary polyculture techniques by Wes Jackson. This proposal led him to be awarded the Right Livelihood Award in 2000, considering that «a transition from annual monocultures to perennial polycultures can be seen as a revolution in agriculture that is deeper than the invention of the Haber-Bosch Process for manufacture nitrogenous fertilizers, or the Green Revolution” ( LUCSUS, 2020).

Polyculture techniques are characterized by using different types of plantations within the same area of land, either through crop rotation or the planting of different ones. This type of technique mimics, to some extent, the biodiversity of natural systems.

As we can see in comparative tables 1 and 2 between monoculture and polyculture, the second requires greater experience in the diversity of techniques for different types of cultivation, as well as greater investment in labor and tools.

However, the proposal of polyculture techniques opens a door to a sustainable path, food security, and water preservation, so that the comparison of costs compared to monoculture could be compensated in the medium or long term.

Under the principle of moving from awareness to action, at Frutos Guadalajara we have started polyculture tests in our orchards. We hope to be able to share the results in terms of productivity and preservation of our lands in the medium term.

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El ser disruptivo dentro de uno de los sectores de mayor tradición a través de la historia de la humanidad no es una tarea fácil, requiere de compromiso y constancia, puesto que lo socialmente establecido ha estado arraigado por generaciones. Los puntos que he compartido en este artículo son una mezcla que nos ha ayudado a construir una nueva normalidad y da pie al nuevo modus operandi que dejamos como herencia a este sector.

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2023 the year of the Mexican avocado

Despite Mexico’s leadership in producing and exporting avocados, the challenges in production continued due to the international context, especially in political and economic terms, causing the increase in the cost of inputs, logistics fees, and currency exchange

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2023 El Año del Aguacate Mexicano

Los comienzos de 2023 parecen favorecer a las exportaciones mexicanas dentro del mercado europeo del aguacate. De los principales exportadores del fruto en 2022: Chile, España e Israel, se encuentran con poca disponibilidad de fruto, mientras que Perú, África del Sur y Kenya se preparan para cosechar en los próximos meses. El escenario se ha invertido, pasamos de tener una sobre oferta en diciembre pasado a tener escasez.

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Buenos Aires 2362, Circunvalación Americas, 44630 Guadalajara, Jalisco. México.