Under the brand “Machitún” and inspired by a Mapuche ritual of healing, the 21 members of the farming co-op Viñas Caupolicán are taking their product directly from Sagrada Familia to the tables of England, through the Fair Trade system.

This business of small producers was born in 2009, and within a few years has managed to export its wines to Europe through a system based on dialogue, transparency and respect, seeking greater equity in international trade, especially for small producers.

Paola Parra, Manager of Caupolicán Wines, explains that the idea of Fair Trade is that the producer can reach the costumer as close as possible. “The small producer’s problem is that there are many intermediaries and price instability. Trade traditionally varies greatly the price of grapes, so the idea is that Fair Trade gives producers stability over time, and that is important. Also it’s important to be in compliance with labor standards and environmental concerns. In fact there are certain products that we cannot use, this is also also important for us, so we advance not only economically but also socially.”

The company recently acquired two stainless steel tanks of 100,000 liters each, which were financed by INDAP, through the competition Early Operation Development Program Investment. This was aninitiative which cost about 20 million pesos, of which 80% was contributed by INDAP and the rest by the members of the company.

INDAP regional director, Luis Verdejo, together with the area specialist of INDAP Curicó, Mario Caraves, visited the location of the new tanks and shared with the partners of Caupolicán Wines on the occasion of this enterprise’s new undertaking. “We are awarding a 16 million peso Joint-Venture Development Grant We are very happy together here with farmers, since this is a another step where the government of Chile is making technology available to farmers to get ahead and make agriculture more sustainable every day.”

Regarding the importance of Fair Trade and the value of these farmers being part of this initiative, the director of INDAP said it is “very important because they have pursued authentification for Fair Trade, which means that the farmers are paid a fair price, which is to say a higher price, a price that is consistent with the international market and where your business can be productive and sustainable over time and will not be affected by price declines, which often cause businesses to shut down.” The area specialist of INDAP Curicó said further that in the community of Sagrada Familia there are 2 business associations in wine, Viñas Caupolicán and Lautaro. Both are run by small farmers who export their wines through Fair Trade.