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Archive for January 2009

Peruvian Fruit Producers and Exporters to Attend Fruit Logistica 2009 Event on Feb 4-6 in Berlin, Germany

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logo-index-enOn February 4-6, the leading trade fair for the international fresh produce trade Fruit Logistica 2009 will take place in Berlin, Germany.

While going through the list of exhibitors, it was great to see so many Peruvian firms and associations participating, including the Peruvian associations of producers of Hass avocados, citrus lime, lemon, asparragus, mango, grapes, among many others.

Consorcio de Productores de Fruta (CPF, and translated the Consortium of Producers of Fruit) is one of the Peruvian companies exhibiting. In a press release, Eugenio Oliveira, CPF’s Commercial Manager, says:

“With our projected volume growth in coming years it will be very important in 2009 to continue the development of our business and establish our brand “Malki” in new international markets. We are looking to new markets in Russia and Asia and plan commercial trials to the Middle East. Increasing production, exchange rate volatility and global recession are all factors in leading us to look at new markets as part of our long term vision”.

To learn more about this event in Germany, click here.

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Written by Catherine Castro

January 24, 2009 at 10:26 pm

News from our Argentinean Friend Seba on his Trip to Peru, Headed to Piura

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hemingway

Ernest Hemingway in Cabo Blanco, Piura, Peru

Our Argentinean friend Seba seems to be having fun in Peru, and he wrote a comment to our post saying (translated from Spanish):

“Thanks for the post. Yesterday we went up to Machu Picchu, very nice. I will be arriving to Piura in the next days. The goal is to stay until February 2. Looking for the calmest beach in Peru, which one would that be? Accept all recommendations.”

Hi Seba – Glad you are having a wonderful time in Peru. In Piura, I would highly recommend you going to the District of Mancora where you can pick and choose among wonderful beaches and you can relax with a ceviche and a really cold Peruvian beer (ask for Cuzquena, another option is Cristal). Food is amazing, make sure you try one of those omellettes with shrimp (they are huge and delicious) for brunch. And don’t forget to ask for “cancha” as a little appetizer which is traditional — it is dry, toasted salted corn. It’s vicious! The good thing about Mancora is its size. It is small enough you can actually walk it all along, and then you can catch a bus (ask for buses or “combis”) that will take you to nearby beaches. In terms of stay, and since you are hitchhiking, the best option is to check out for small hotels nearby. Since it is peak season, might be tough to get into the big, fancy hotels. You might also want to ask for Inns or sometimes families rent rooms as a small business during peak season.

To help you navigate the beaches, it is helpful to use the km. you are along the Panamericana Sur (highway) as a reference. The District of Mancora is located at km. 1165. So here is a list of nearby beaches in Piura going southbound you might want to check out:

  • Playa Mancora is on km 1165 — This is my beach pick. Check out the Punta Ballenas Inn (named ballenas as some years ago you could see whales in the shores). Great spot for relaxing and enjoying a fun nightlife. Along the main street in the Panamericana Norte you can check out traditional shops for arts and souvenirs, and rentals for surf boards if you are into it. You can also find information sites, including a bus stop. Bars at night can go all the way til early hours of the morning with reggae music, cold beers and Maracuya daiquiris.
  • Playa Pocitas (also called Mancora chico) is on km. 1160 – many people claim it is the best beach in Peru, you can get there walking, taxi cab or moto-taxi from Mancora, Vichayito or Los Organos. It is a bit more calm than Mancora given it is farther from the city. The name “pocitas” was given due to its beach forming small natural swimming pool-type of beach spots once the sea level is low. You can find good quality hotels in the area, and families are often among its tourists.
  • Vichayito is on km. 1155 in the District of Los Organos. This is a very calm beach, wonderful to relax. You can find a beach spa, and bungalows to stay at. Great spot for kite surfing or ocean diving.
  • Los Organos is on km 1150. Punta Veleros is the best beach in this neighborhood. It is a great beach but most likely you will need to make reservations in advance for staying at one of the bungalows or hotels. Might be a bit tough given the peak season.
  • Cabo Blanco is on km 1137 in the District of El Alto. This is the beach you liked to explore from where Ernest Hemingway got inspiration to write his book “El Viejo y el Mar” (“The Old Man and the Sea”). He liked fishing the Merlin Negro (big marlin). This beach holds world records on fishing, and is a great spot for surfers.
  • Lobitos is on km 1100 in the District of Lobitos. This is a beach a bit far from the others, which explains why its weather and beaches are a bit colder. It is a windy city, and there aren’t as much tourist facilities as the other beaches. Perhaps you might want to check it out, but wouldnt recommend you spending the night here.

And if you have a bit more time, here is a list of beaches in the Department of Tumbes (north to Piura, close enough to the borders with Ecuador) you might want to check out:

  • Punta Sal located in km 1187. It is 15-20 minutes driving from Mancora. A great beach spot with several hotels and restaurants for tourists. You might want to call in advance to make sure you have somewhere to stay given it is peak season.
  • Zorritos in km 1241. This is a good beach spot for relaxing. Has various hotels and restaurants, and is close to the city of Tumbes (capital of the Department of Tumbes) and the frontier with Ecuador. If you go, you might want to check out Hervideros, a small site of natural thermal water pools. Zorritos has several bus agencies, pharmacies, mini markets, etc.

Since you were interested in Ernest Hemingway, here is a snapshot I found:

In the 1950s and 1960s, fishermen traveled to Cabo Blanco to hunt big marlin. Ernest Hemingway caught a 700 pound marlin while filming the motion picture based on his novel , The Old Man and the Sea. In 1953, Alfred Glassell Jr. caught the IGFA all tackle world record black marlin, weighing 1560 pounds.

Have fun, and keep us posted on your trip!

Got tips for our Argentinean friend on his trip to Piura? Feel free to share and post them here!

Written by Catherine Castro

January 24, 2009 at 12:55 pm

Peruvian Amazon Women Handcrafted Baskets in San Diego and Chicago Museums and Zoo

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amazon1Ever wondered how you can support the native poor women from the Peruvian Amazon from the U.S.?

The New York Times wrote an article about how women from a remote Amazon village weave baskets as a way of living to export them to the US.

As the article states, their first international buyers are the San Diego Natural History Museum and San Diego Zoo, and they plan to sell to other museums and home décor purveyors like the Field Museum in Chicago and eventually Cost Plus.

What is unique about their weaving ability is that they use fibers from the branch of the chambira palm tree and turn them into anything they need — fishing nets, hammocks, purses, skirts and dental floss.

And here is what Nancy Stevens, manager of retail and wholesale operations for the San Diego Natural History Museum, states when talking about selling Peruvian handicrafts to retailers in the US:

“These baskets represent so much more than simply a basket. When I began to hear their story from a local project into a story of sustainability, where they’re being developed as a responsible use of the natural resources of this Amazon region — it just clicked so beautifully with the mission of this museum.”

To read the full article, click here.

Written by Catherine Castro

January 23, 2009 at 11:52 pm

Join the “Connect to Peru” Facebook Group!

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facebook2Just a reminder that “Connect to Peru” is available via Facebook!

Click here to join the dozens of readers already getting their daily updates via Facebook!

Written by Catherine Castro

January 22, 2009 at 11:18 pm

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Join “Connect to Peru” Via Twitter!

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twitter_logo_sJust a reminder that “Connect to Peru” is also available via Twitter:

http://twitter.com/connecttoperu

Written by Catherine Castro

January 21, 2009 at 9:07 am

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Expectations from NY Bronx Peruvian Immigrant at Today’s Inauguration Ceremony

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Today’s New York Daily News’ Bronx issue published a story on dozens of Bronx residents visiting Washington D.C. for the Presidential Inauguration celebration. And a Peruvian immigrant Alejandra Delfin among them shares her expectations:

Alejandra Delfin, 42, a Peruvian immigrant and artist, is going because her daughter, Misra Walker, 16, got tickets by working in [Rep. Jose] Serrano’s office.

They were prepared to sleep in their car, but will instead use sleeping bags on the floor of a three-bedroom apartment.

“The Election Day was so amazing, but it is not real in a way,” she said. “Being there is almost to say this is really happening and we are part of it.”

She said the visual image of Obama, the son of a Kenyan father and a white mother from Kansas, gives hope to all people with darker skin.

“I feel he’s more understanding and open-minded,” she said. “Even just to see someone who looks like us in leadership, it’s wonderful.”

To read the full article, click here.

Written by Catherine Castro

January 20, 2009 at 12:19 pm

Forbes Magazine Ranks Peru Among “World’s Top 10 Culture Capitals”

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forbes1Forbes magazine ranked Peru among top 10 “World’s Culture Capitals”! 

In the travel section of its most recent issue, Forbes magazine states:

Known both for its textiles and folk art as well as ancient structures and biodiversity, the OECD says Peru classifies 93% of its tourists as cultural tourists. However, Peru is different from many other cultural meccas in that it targets young travelers who spend less per day, but tend to stay longer. Along with volunteer tourism, those with an International Student Identity Card receive discounts on everything from hostels to Inca Trail tours. […]

And according to the Peruvian government, the country’s tourism dollars reached $2.22 billion in 2008, an 11% increase from $2 billion in 2007.

“In a downturn like this, many young people will choose to travel at the end of their degree, rather than immediately embarking on a career,” says Richards. “They might be the most effective target [for cultural tourism].”

To read the full article, click here.

Written by Catherine Castro

January 19, 2009 at 7:29 pm