How are Acai Seeds helping families and saving the rainforest?

Aug 13 08:07 2009 Venk Prabhu Print This Article

Pronounced “ah-sigh-ee”, the acai berries are having an incredible impact on economies (such as the Brazilian economy) and families in close proximities to rainforests.

They are one of the most diversely sustainable fruits in the world,Guest Posting helping to sustain local economies, the environment, and local families.  This low maintenance tree could be one part of the solution to stopping the destruction of the rainforest.  And it’s healthy too, laden with more anti-oxidants than any other fruit. Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin-top:0in; mso-para-margin-right:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:10.0pt; mso-para-margin-left:0in; line-height:115%; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;} Saving the RainforestAcai seeds come from the Acai Palm Tree, a rainforest tree that is often cut down for its wood, or to make pastures for cattle farming.  By promoting the sales of acai seed and acai berry jewelry, we can help to save the rainforest by encouraging the cultivation of the acai berry rather than the harvesting of the tree, or the cutting down of rainforest trees to make space for cattle farming.  Infusing the local economy with profits from acai jewelry sales, people are less likely to destroy their natural environment for their livelihoods. Local artisans and indigenous tribes are reaping greater rewards from the creation of jewelry than they were from cutting down the trees for wood or cattle farming.  Today, up to 95% of the deforestation of rainforests is due to livestock farming.  Supporting the trade of acai jewelry and other acai-based products is even motivating cattle farmers to plant new acai palm trees on their property, helping very slowly to repair the damage.Helping FamiliesMany of those who create acai jewelry are indigenous tribes and local women's co-ops.  By supporting their creative efforts, we are helping them to create a sustainable local economy, helping them to feed and educate their children, and helping them to plan for the future.  Many of the women in the co-ops are single parents who are struggling to get through inflating economies, and every piece of jewelry that is purchased from fair trade sources goes a long way to empower them and secure their future.Health BenefitsThe acai berries contain one and half times more antioxidants than pomegranate seeds, over triple the amount found in blueberries, and over six times the amount found in strawberries, and is also rich in energy-giving calories. (Source: The Observer, Andrew Purvis, 2007)  Antioxidants reduce the amount of free radicals in the body (free radicals are caused by all kinds of pollutants and toxins) and therefore help to reduce the risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease.Wabiblo, an online fair trade shop based in Toronto, Canada, carries a range of fair trade acai seed and acai berry jewelry made by women’s co-ops in Brazil and Costa-Rica.  Help to save the rainforest, to empower the women who are joining these co-ops, and to improve their local economies by wearing an acai seed bracelet or necklace.

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About Article Author

Venk Prabhu
Venk Prabhu

Venk is a Master of Architecture (M.Arch) candidate in Canada and is currently researching sustainable design methods for existing architecture.  Through research of sustainability, venk was introduced to the concepts of fair trade, biodynamic agriculture, and other spokes on the wheel of global sustainability.  Wabiblo was created to promote and support fair, sustainable, and socially conscious trade in Canada and the US.  A percentage of the proceeds from Wabiblo are contributed to S.O.S. Children's Villages Canada, while the rest goes to support various personal research activities in fair trade and sustainability.

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