Avocado, how much water is needed to grow it



Feel like guacamole? Think carefully

After reading the inquiry by journalist Danwatch and the beautiful report by Alice Facchini for Internazionale entitled "The avocado that leaves thousands of Chileans without water", perhaps you will have the urge to make a guacamole from time to time.

Yes, because " to produce a single kilo of avocado you need about two thousand liters of water " (cit. Internazionale); it seems therefore that the inhabitants of Petorca - which is located in the Chilean area of ​​Valparaìso, a land of scarce rains, surrounded by immense avocado plantations - are not having a good time, because of the rationing of water that is less for families, but that is in fact is widely used to nourish the precious fruit.

The intensive production of "green gold" is not only a Chilean affair, but also the people of Mexico (see Il Fatto Alimentare) and other countries where the fruit can be cultivated have long since fallen on their knees.

Black avocado, pay attention to what you buy

The avocado, the fruit of South American and tropical lands, has been arriving on our table for years now; you will certainly have wondered, seeing the varieties at the supermarket, what is the difference between the green avocado and the one with the darker and more wrinkled skin, which often tends to be avoided thinking, mistakenly, that it is second choice.

As the journalist herself writes about the avocado and the black variety "In Italy there is a continuous increase in imports, with a growth of 28 percent compared to last year: the most sold avocado is the one with the green skin, but today the demand for the Hass type with black peel is also increasing, the one that comes precisely from Chile.

Following the Danwatch investigation, some Danish supermarkets have decided to stop selling avocado from companies in the province of Petorca. Pay attention therefore to what you buy in Italy : find out more about the producer you decide to subsidize through your purchase, considering that in the area there are still small avocado producers who, despite everything, try to survive.

From the river to the landfill: water is a right

The activist Veronica Vilches, mentioned in the article, moves in the front line to defend her land, her rivers and the families that live in it. Amnesty International does the same, fighting for a fundamental human right.

Moreover, from the Rights Observatory it is impressive to observe the "photo story" of a river, the Ligua which, from lush and fishy in 2000, 17 years later became the shadow of itself, or a strip of arid and dirty land.

The same thing happened to the Petorca River. In fact, in 2010 the UN General Assembly approved a resolution that recognizes the right to drinking water and sanitation as a fundamental human right. And Chile has recognized and signed this resolution.

The globalization of consumption

Saying no to globalization and depriving oneself of certain tastes or products is probably not the solution. What we can do is make our daily purchases more rational and thoughtful.

Consider that after the quinoa boom, good for health but not always for the families of the Andes (Cfr La Stampa), bananas in the past, cocoa, coffee, sugar or tea and other foods, so here you know choosing the product that ends up on the table is fundamental.

And it's not just about food, but also vegetable oils for the skin, exotic nut butters and strange body names, nourishing hair lotions, to name a few other products.

Always make sure you can therefore know the supply chain, that is the origin of the product, before buying.

FairTrade Italy, for example, one of the many organizations that have been fighting for this for years.

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