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FAO Director-General highlights value of quinoa, South American heritage food

Rome, Italy, 15 June 2012

"As we face the challenge of feeding the world population in a context of climate change, quinoa offers an alternative for those countries suffering from food insecurity," FAO Director-General Graziano da Silva remarked at a ceremony appointing Evo Morales, President of the Plurinational State of Bolivia, Special Ambassador to FAO for the International Year of Quinoa, to be observed by the United Nations in 2013.

"Quinoa is an ancestral legacy that has been cultivated for more than 7,000 years and is presented as a worthy alternative amid the current food crisis. It can achieve good yields and is very resistant to frost," President Morales said, recalling his early days as a small-scale producer of quinoa in Orinoca, his birthplace.

Among the properties credited to this cereal, Morales stressed the reduction of anemia and cholesterol, as well as its suitability for maintaining a balanced diet due to its high ratio of unsaturated fats.

-News Article in FAO website (English)