Foto: The white-eyed parakeet (Psittacara leucophthalmus) is a small green Neotropical parrot. Least concern on IUCN Redlist. According to the IUCN, this bird has been heavily trafficked since 1981.

Discover: A Threatened Environmental Jewel – off the beaten path: The Tropical Andes Biodiversity Hotspot. Post Extractivism. Beyond Sustainable

Permatree Superfoods will export plant based foods as added value SUPERFOODS directly grown, selected, transformed and packed – all with-in the productive territory – in Zamora-Chinchipe, located south east, Ecuador, Latin America. The fact that the entire operation will be in this space, will generate a real added value in this, off the beaten path,  territory. For the people, planet, and also for profit. This is also known as the triple bottom line framework, to evaluate the performance in a broader perspective to create greater business value. Also known as triple impact social-enterprise.

In this article we will analyze the environmental biodiversity hotspot and the impact of plant based foods as well as the extractive mining and oil industry in regards to the very unique environment which still remains mostly uncovered. 

Did you know that Zamora-Chinchipe, which is part of the great amazon basin, is also home to a biodiversity ecosystem very unique on the entire planet earth? 

It’s one of the very last existing eco-corridors between the once great amazon basin and the andee mountain range of Latin America. A neotropical mountain rain forest is scientifically outstanding. But logistically highly challenging working place, combining steep terrain, 10-12 humid months and un unparalleled vegetation density and growth speed, from the ground layer up to the canopy.

Drone-photo: PermaTree in Ecuador - Jungle Canopy. Neotropical Mountain Rain Forest at Permatree in Zamora-Chinchipe, Ecuador
Drone-photo: PermaTree in Ecuador – Jungle Canopy. Neotropical Mountain Rain Forest at Permatree in Zamora-Chinchipe, Ecuador

Tropical Andes Biodiversity Hotspot

Permatree Superfoods is located with-in the most biodiverse region of the world, the Tropical Andes Biodiversity Hotspot. This region is so biologically diverse, that it is hard to comprehend. The diversity is mainly due to its geographic position (on the Equator) and the difference in elevation, climate and rainfall created by the mountains. The Tropical Andes is the most biologically diverse of all the hotspots and contains about one-sixth of all plant life on the planet, including 30,000 species of vascular plants. It has the largest variety of amphibians with 981 distinct species, of birds with 1,724 species, of mammals at 570 species, and takes second place after the Mesoamerica Hotspot for reptile diversity at 610 species.

PermaTree Monitoring Flora and Fauna Biodiversity via iNaturalist - Global wildlife observation network
PermaTree Monitoring Flora and Fauna Biodiversity via iNaturalist – Global wildlife observation network

PermaTree Monitoring Flora and Fauna Biodiversity via iNaturalist

Global wildlife observation network – iNaturalist is used by citizens and scientists to monitor species presence and distribution. It also helps with identification – it is common to upload a photo and wait for the iNaturalist community to identify it. The iNaturalist system has also been ‘trained’ to identify species in photos.
Permatree Ecuador iNaturalist monitoring flora and fauna profile

Drone-photo: Valle de las Luciérnagas and Rio Zamora, Ecuador. Tropical Andes Biodiversity Hotspot
Drone-photo: Valle de las Luciérnagas and Rio Zamora, Ecuador. Tropical Andes Biodiversity Hotspot

Sweet Water

The Andes Mountains are South America’s water towers, serving as the water source for the main stems of both the Amazon and Orinoco rivers, the largest and third-largest rivers in the world measured by discharge. These rivers provide water for numerous cities, including four national capitals.

Natural ecosystems also help retain soil, to help in maintaining soil fertility for agriculture and to prevent landslides on steep slopes during periods of high rainfall. These ecosystems also help regulate climates by forming critical components of the water cycle and limiting the degree to which solar radiation heats the air. In cloud forests, trees intercept cloudborne mist, which condenses and runs off into streams and rivers. Supporting services of the Tropical Andes include pollination of crops and soil formation. The hotspot also has an important role to play in carbon storage to regulate the global carbon budget and buffer against climate change. Its forests store 5.4 billion tonnes of carbon, equivalent to the annual carbon emissions of 1 billion cars. 

Wildlife fauna Blue-gray tanager (Thraupis episcopus)
Photo: Wildlife fauna Blue-gray tanager (Thraupis episcopus)

Threatened Biodiversity Hotspot

Despite its rich biodiversity, the hotspot also ranks as one of the most severely threatened areas in the tropics, with a large portion of its landscape having been transformed. The northern Andes, with the fertile inter-Andean valleys of Colombia and Ecuador, are the most degraded as a result of agriculture and urbanization. Forests remain in the higher and more inaccessible areas. In contrast, extensive forests and grasslands remain in Peru and Bolivia, as agriculture and grazing is less intense. Even in those countries, however, recent road improvements and expansion are resulting in forest conversion and fragmentation.

Adaptive Contour Access Path - Sustainable Agriculture principles and Tropical Permaculture framework at Permatree in Ecuador.
Adaptive Contour Access Path – Sustainable Agriculture principles and Tropical Permaculture framework at Permatree in Ecuador.

Regenerative Alternatives to Extractivism

Being aware of this Biodiversity Hotspot, is one of our initial motivations with Permatree Superfoods S.A. to develop, not just sustainable, but real regenerative alternatives to the classic Extractive Industries of mining and oil. By creating shade-grown agroforestry polycultures of tropical fruits and transforming them on-site in added-value products. Based on sustainable agriculture principles and Tropical Permaculture framework to design solutions based on three ethical principles: care of the Earth; care of people; share surplus to reinvest toward these ends.

The Carbon Footprint of the Food Supply Chain. Chart from Our World in Data relies on data from the largest meta-analysis of food systems in history.
Infographic: The Carbon Footprint of the Food Supply Chain. Chart from Our World in Data relies on data from the largest meta-analysis of food systems in history. Source: | CC-BY Hannah Ritchie

Environmental Impact of Plant Based Foods

A plant-based diet requires less water to produce the food as it suppresses all animal based products. In addition to consuming a lot of water to produce meat, livestock farming also pollutes water sources because the waste produced by the livestock ends up in waterways. Eating plant foods – instead of eating animals who eat plants – cuts out the enormous environmental burden that goes along with animal agriculture. Raising animals for food introduces a major extra step of waste relative to the efficiency of us just eating the plant foods directly.

Environmental catastrophe regarding Oil

The current situation in the Amazon exemplifies this. In Ecuador, several indigenous nations accused Chevron of perpetrating a massive environmental catastrophe and have been fighting for years to get any kind of compensation. They had their waterways polluted again when two oil pipelines burst just weeks after Ecuador declared a national lockdown over the pandemic. The primary source of food and water for 27,000 indigenous people is now polluted by nearly 16,000 barrels of petroleum. It isn’t just Ecuador. The Colombian border town of Leticia, a main commercial hub for many indigenous groups, has the highest per-capita death rate in the country, according to figures from Colombia’s Health Ministry.

Environmental catastrophe regarding extraction mining 

Mining is always highly controversial. Mining is often in conflictive areas, where countless human rights violations have been documented, and where the communities have battled against the development of the mines. Mining is a direct threat to the headwaters of the Amazon River and the overall biodiversity found in this region of the Andes. Scientists have identified the Condor mountain range as Ecuador’s most biodiverse ecosystem; it contains perhaps the richest flora in all of South America.

The UN recently concluded that resource extraction is responsible for 80% of biodiversity loss and 50% of the world’s carbon emission.

The United Nations is an intergovernmental organization

Like many developing nations, Ecuador’s desire to diversify its economy and shed its dependence on oil by tapping into its mineral wealth is at odds with social and legal forces seeking to prevent inevitable environmental damage and exploitation brought on by mining. Mining in rainforests: it devastates ecosystems and communities to amass wealth in the hands of a few, leaving gaping wounds that leach toxins into the biosphere for centuries. This is totally unnecessary to meet the real economic needs of civilization. Minerals for industry can be provided without destroying our life-support systems (IUCN-WWF, 1999).

Disturbing fact - to produce a single Gold Ring (200 grams weight), you will need to move 20 tons of rock and soil. Much of this waste carries with it mercury and cyanide, which are used to extract the gold from the rock.
Infographic: Disturbing fact – to produce a single Gold Ring (200 grams weight), you will need to move 20 tons of rock and soil. Much of this waste carries with it mercury and cyanide, which are used to extract the gold from the rock. Source:

Another interesting but highly disturbing fact – Earthworks estimates that, to produce enough raw gold to make a single gold ring (200 grams) , you will need to about move 20 tons of rock and soil. Much of this waste carries with it mercury and cyanide, which are used to extract the gold from the rock. The resulting erosion clogs streams and rivers and can eventually taint marine ecosystems far downstream of the mine site.

Fauna: Chestnut-eared araçari (Pteroglossus castanotis) at Permatree in Ecuador
Wildlife: Fauna – Chestnut-eared araçari (Pteroglossus castanotis) at Permatree in Ecuador

Environmental-Impact goals of Permatree Superfoods

  • 80’000 bamboo plants for reforestation on 400 family farms will absorb 5.586 t of CO2 annually
  • 800 conservation of critical freshwater micro-basins
  • 400 flora and fauna conservation areas for enhancing the mega biodiversity
  • 400 anaerobic bio-digesters to activate microorganisms in the soil
  • 400 dry toilets
  • Sustainable agriculture focused on polycultures with unique-origin micro-lot

Analyzing the triple impact of the ambitious Permatree Superfoods venture in the Amazon for the export of plant based superfoods

Our goal with Permatree Superfoods is to transform the productive territory in a regenerative way, generating social, environmental and economic impact with positive results. 2,000 direct beneficiaries and 50,000 indirect beneficiaries. 300% more direct income for our 400 small family farmers. Our motivation is to fight poverty with business means, capitalizing on the benefits and opportunities of a globalized world.

The role of companies has changed a lot in recent times and more since Covid-19. It is known that the responsibility to be profitable and seek benefits solely for the owners and partners is no longer enough. On a global scale, it has become increasingly clear that the companies of today and tomorrow must have a triple impact: society, the economy and the environment.

Why is the triple impact relevant?

It is relevant when it comes to the positive results a company has for people and the planet.

The term “impact” is used as an investment criterion, as an investment policy and as a consequence of it. We have to consider the impact of our decisions on our employees, customers, suppliers, society and the environment. We are aware that everything is interconnected.

We speak of “triple impact” because the results have to do with:

  1. Social impact
  2. Economic impact
  3. Environmental impact

Focused on building comprehensive corporate sustainability so that PermaTree SuperFoods is resilient, sustainable and generates a real positive impact on society and the environment. The triple baseline allows setting not only economic but also environmental and social objectives to achieve ideal business performance.

Triple-impact of Permatree Superfoods

  1. SOCIAL-Impact
    1. 400 small farming families
    2. 2000 direct beneficiaries
    3. 50’000 indirect beneficiaries
    4. 75% of women operating
    5. 10% job offer for young people
    6. Education / Training
    7. Interaction-space / Exhibition space
      1. Local entrepreneurs
      2. Agricultural producers
      3. International clients
      4. Communities
      5. Experience tourism
      6. Art and culture
      7. Education
  2. Environmental-Impact
    1. 80’000 bamboo plants for reforestation on 400 family farms will absorb 5.586 t of CO2 annually
    2. 800 conservation of critical freshwater micro-basins
    3. 400 flora and fauna conservation areas for mega biodiversity
    4. 400 anaerobic bio-digesters to activate microorganisms in the soil
    5. 400 dry toilets
    6. Sustainable agriculture focused on polycultures with unique-origin micro-lot
  3. Economic-Impact
    1. 300% more direct income for small families that work the land with sustainable and regenerative agriculture
    2. Direct sources of work
    3. Youth Employment
    4. Foreign exchange earnings
    5. Dynamization of the local economy
    6. Added value of raw materials in productive territory
    7. International market opening

UN Sustainable Development Goals

Permatree Superfoods, works towards these UN Sustainable Development Goals:

Image: Permatree Superfoods, works towards these UN Sustainable Development Goals

Updated Ambitious Food Processing Facilities of PERMATREE SUPERFOODS in Productive Territory with Triple-Impact: Social, Environmental and Economic

It will be the first certified and free-of-mining, fruit, seed and vegetable processing plant in the Ecuadorian Amazon. Social-Enterprise with triple impact: environmental,  social, and economic productivity, in all its processes, agricultural, dehydration, processing and export of superfoods.


Permatree Superfoods structure overview: Dark green: Transformation-plant | Orange: Coffee-shop and Showroom and Coworking sace | Lime Green: Administration Office

The PERMATRE SUPERFOODS food processing plant facilities consist of three key structures to transform the local raw material into value-added superfoods for export purposes, all on site. It does not exceed 0.6 hectares in total area and almost 2000 m2 of construction between the three buildings that facilitate the process flow. The dehydration-plant is the biggest with almost 1000 m2. The Showroom / coffee-shop has two floors. And the Administration-office is the smallest building.

3D Backview of the PERMATREE SUPERFOODS processing plant in Zamora-Chinchipe, Ecuador
3D Backview of the PERMATREE SUPERFOODS processing plant in Zamora-Chinchipe, Ecuador

Processing plant

The PERMATREE SUPERFOODS S.A facilities will consist in the first instance of a processing plant, a place where all the magic basically happens. Which will have 4 certified laboratories for physical, chemical, organoleptic and sensory analysis of the raw material and finished product. It will have a team of 16 specialists in each of the tasks assigned within the process flow. The plant will be certified with Good Manufacturing Practices (BPM) and also Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) in order to guarantee food safety, in a logical and objective way. To improve the processes, constant training will be carried out in order to improve the attitudes, knowledge and skills of the workers

The entire construction meets international standards for food processing and safety. The industrial fan extractors visible on the ceiling of the processing plant fulfill a very important function, which is to maintain a natural temperature and aeration within those of the processing plant.

Image: Public space - Showroom / Coffee-shop and co-working space at PERMATREE SUPERFOODS in Ecuador
Image: Public space – Showroom / Coffee-shop and co-working space at PERMATREE SUPERFOODS in Ecuador

Showroom / Coffee-Shop

The second structure is the showroom, located on the left side of the plant, where there will be a public space for the Permatree Café Tipikas gourmet coffee-shop, as well as the coworking space. Also for our workers, there will be a canteen and a room. Here we can find 4 people operating.

Administration / Office

And finally a structure for the administrative offices of PERMATREE SUPERFOODS S.A. with space for 8 specialized people to constantly enable and facilitate the entire process of transformation of raw material into superfoods by exporting.

Public and restricted areas

But if you want to visit us, you should know that not everything is publicly accessible. The processing plant being a food-safety-area, where the products will be manufactured, only specific people can enter it. Visitors will only be allowed to see the process flow from the second floor behind a plastic window. This to fully comply with the highest food safety standards.

Our administration offices will also be of non-public access, except for collaborators, clients. The showroom will be the public interaction area, where you can go to have a cup of coffee of the highest quality, prepared by a barista with various international extraction methods. And also see the exhibitions of our on-site value-added superfoods. On the second floor you will find the coworking space, where you can rent a table for an hour or a day, to carry out remote-work with Wi-Fi and be tasting the best coffee or Amazonas tees such as the Guayusa-tea or the normally hardly available Soursop-tea.

Image: Product packshots of the Superfoods for export from PERMATREE SUPERFOODS in Ecuador
Image: Product packshots of the Superfoods for export from PERMATREE SUPERFOODS in Ecuador

Superfoods for Export

Our main customers are located in European and North American countries. The product is aimed at anyone who lives an energetic life; that when being in the office or going out for a walk, he can enjoy such a rich and healthy food, and also with fruits that are not found on the continent. Leaving aside what the big screen sells us as natural and healthy, which seems to momentarily satisfy our needs to consume something, but unfortunately they can be harmful to our health. It is known that the pace of life of people is increasingly hectic and that the time dedicated to personal care and health is very reduced; what in the great majority of the occasions does not allow to maintain healthy eating habits.

For example – The banana contains vitamins, minerals and fructose. Fructose is of particular interest to athletes, as it is available in the body as a reserve and can be used when needed to provide new energy.

There are a wide variety of dehydrated fruit producing companies on the world market. However, the value proposition of PERMATREE SUPERFOODS S.A. It is to offer a product that is not only more nutritious, without any additives, but also to boost value of  working small producer families by paying them 300% more, than the local value, thus enhancing the sustainable agriculture and creating value in the productive territory.

Increasing the nutritional value of dehydrated plant based superfoods, without using any colorants or additives and truly incorporating small scale farming families into the production and value chain are the main objectives of PERMATREE SUPERFOODS S.A.

Dried fruits are an excellent option for leading a healthy lifestyle, allowing consumers to have natural and healthy products at their fingertips, convenient, quick and easy to consume, for any time and place.

The entire project should be complete and operational by spring 2022.

Dehydrated Bananas Ecuador Permatree Superfoods

Our Impact – Permatree Superfoods

Permatree Superfoods Logo

Our goal with Permatree Superfoods is to transform the productive territory in a regenerative way, creating social, environmental and economic impact.

(1) Social

A regenerative system includes the social well-being of human actors within it and in the broader landscape: rural farming families, collaborators, and their family. Providing safe and healthy work environments ensures that our collaborators are in optimal condition and more productive. Create a true economic value to not only survive, but live well from farm work. Far beyond “Fair Trade”. It is not logical, that in the value chain, the raw material producers (farmers) are the one that earn the least. This is a key issue of the current low industrial local and global food products quality.

(2) Environmental – Biodiversity and Water

Biodiversity provides us with key ecosystem services that allow us to naturally and sustainably improve production within the field.

Diversity of soil fauna: Healthy soils are alive with a diversity of organisms in it, a living ecosystem that sustains and sustains plant life.

Crop diversity: This refers to the collection of plants that we have chosen to be part of the regenerative tropical system.

Diversity of endemic flora and fauna species of the humid tropical climate: The conservation of the highest levels of biodiversity is achieved by maintaining a mosaic of different habitats, including forest slopes, river channels, wetlands and reservoirs within the limits of the farm.

Strengthen resilience to climate change: Conservation of water sources and micro-watersheds. Promote the regeneration of mega biodiversity to have crops more adaptable to climate change.

(3) Economic – Circular economy

With the circular economy model, waste can be reduced by up to 99%. Human beings are the only element in nature that generates garbage. The goal is a circular economy in which we have to close production cycles and maintain a constant flow of natural resources. With our holistic business model, we are creating a great change in the agro value chain and the industry that transforms it into added value. We promote the production of superfoods, beyond organic, in our humid tropical territory.

Dehydrated Bananas Ecuador Permatree Superfoods

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Permatree Superfoods (PTSF) addresses some of the most pressing global challenges, as expressed within the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including Gender Equality, Quality Education, Decent Work and Economic Growth, Conserving water resources, Supporting solutions for sustainable, resilient cities, improving resource efficiency, adapting to climate change, reducing health risks and stimulating innovation & Economic growth.

Permatree Superfoods – Beneficiaries

  1. Direct beneficiaries: 2000
    400 rural farming families selling raw material directly to PTSF. 40 Employees in the plant, show-room and administration. 40 (40 x 4 = 160) in the plant + 400 (400 x 4 = 1600) rural agricultural families + transport services, material inputs, food providers for the plant, municipality, parish government, banks and local savings cooperatives SRI national income tax, superintendency of banks and companies, certifying companies, Agrocalidad, ARCSA, MIPRO, ProEcuador and Senae.
  1. Indirect beneficiaries: 50,000 families
    The entire sector of the parish of the encounters, including the El Padmi neighborhood, impacted all the producer families in the provinces of Zamora-Chinchipe and Morona Santiago, which according to data from the MAG and INEC, there are approximately 50,000 agricultural producer families with basic needs dissatisfied.
  2. Youth job opportunities – boosting youth employment.
  3. Women with problems of domestic violence and single mothers.
  4. 1500 hectares of land that becomes productive beyond organic.
  5. BPA and Free Mining Certification for the 400 agricultural families with an emphasis on holistic certification.
  6. 200 bamboo plants, per family farm, for reforestation, water sources conservation and erosion control.
  7. 2000 kg, on average, of dehydrated bananas on a daily basis at PTSF.
  8. 400 biodigesters creating liquid-biol to improve the soils for the crops on the family farms.
  9. Creating spaces for holistic tourism.
  10. Creating flora and fauna conservation areas. Focused on the mega biodiversity of the unique local species on our planet.
  11. Creando alternativas y conocimiento de nutrición saludable. 
  12. Promoting the local and global circular economy. Increased income for raw material producers so that they truly generate profitable income for them. Thus generating knowledge.
  13. 400 agricultural families free of agrochemicals in Zamora Chinchipe and Morona Santiago, Ecuador
  14. Transparent company policy for all.
  15. Clear and precise communication with an educational approach.
  16. Independent Bio Entrepreneurship: FREE from Politics, Religion and Mining.

Reforestation status with Bamboo – July 2020

Bamboo Reforestation in July 2020. This is the 4th area within the MachuPichu zone we are reforesting with bamboo. Below is a bird-view. We are reforesting zone by zone. It takes some time. Priority are the critical zones first then the rest. (1) Bordering zones – pink circles. (2) Light blue, bottom right (3.) Yellow, bottom left (4) Dark blue, top.

Location: “MachuPichu” zone near the main PermaTree bamboo house at about 900 meters over the sea level. About 50 meters higher that the bamboo house and about 500 meters away.

Bamboo Reforestation at MachuPichu Zone at Permatree in Ecuador.
Bamboo Reforestation at MachuPichu Zone at Permatree in Ecuador.

Highlighted within the photo is the are which has been cleaned of the giant grass just a few days before. The white dots are planted bamboo seedlings. The yellow zone is Guadua angustifolia kunth also known as “cana brava” planted in a line about 1.5 years ago. The yellow circles on the top of the image are Dendrocalamus asper also known as “giant bamboo” which has been planted on the top terrace. What seems flat is actually a very steep mountain (100 meters altitude difference).

Birdview of MachuPichu Terraces at PermaTree in Ecuador.
Birdview of MachuPichu Terraces at PermaTree in Ecuador.

What you see is the MachuPichu zone of 2 hectares in size which has been terraced back in 2008. Initially this zone was 50% cacao CCN-51 monocrop and 50% elephant grass for pasture of cows for cattle ranching.


“Coleccion Castro Naranjal (CCN-51) was created in the 1970s by Homer U. Castro in Ecuador. This variety did not become widely planted in Ecuador until the 1997-98 El Niño event which wiped out a great deal of Nacional crop, and the losses suffered by Nacional growers during this period prompted many to switch to CCN-51”.

CCN-51 Cacao is a cultivar famous for its extremely high yields and its poor flavor characteristics. Most CCN-51 cacao beans are used for the mass-production of products like cocoa butter and “candy bars” heavily laced with milk, sugar, and other additives. Widespread throughout Ecuador due to its high productivity.

Elephant Grass

A species of perennial tropical grass native to the African grasslands. Widespread throughout the tropics due to its high productivity. Causes soil compaction. Reduction of topsoil and soil nutrient. Cattle ranching is expanding in all amazon region and one of the main causes of deforestation of endemic tropical forest. Elephant grass pasture monoculture poses a serious threat to the fragile tropical mega bio-diverse ecosystem.


So the MachuPichu zone was a typical example of local use land since the 60s till almost today in this so unique mega bio-diverse tropical mountain rain forest region in Ecuador. So the decision was made to transform this into something truly regenerative and multi-useful.

  1. First the terraces where made because its extremely steep. Now we have a great access to the top of MachuPichu directly from the bamboo house.
  2. All terraces have been reinforced with vetiver grass as bioengineering tool to control damage by extreme tropical rainfall such as erosion landslides and overall loss of top soil. The vetiver also helps to enhance the soil microorganism due to the deep root activity
  3. Another implemented on site solution where road access horizontal drainage canals (50 cm width) located at the inner side of the access road. Also vertical canals (25 cm width) from top to bottom of the terrain. These vertical canals where hand dug every 25 meters from the top terrace till the bottom. They help to break down the quantity of drainage water after tropical rainfall, which is literally A lot of water in very short amount of time.

Now that access was truly improved and the terraces have been reinforced and the extreme rainfall was under control. It was time to focus on a general solution to enhance bio-diversity again and additionally find a solution for all the different surrounding neighbors which are still with pasture monoculture on CNN-51 monoculture managed with pesticides.

Long term solution: Bamboo

Having transplanted more than 1000 bamboo seedlings at Permatree since 2016 the idea to work with bamboo on “MachuPichu” was not so far away. There have been more than a few learnings which differ from theory but that was to expect. It was also interesting to see how well the bamboo can adapt and grow with this red clay soil (Ultisol) compared to other fruit trees. In some parts of the red clay soil even the vetiver grass had difficulties to grow because of the high iron amount in the soil. Bamboo is amazing. Once you have all the relevant knowledge about bamboo and the uses you will be speechless. 

Overview of the planted zones with diverse bamboo all over PermaTree
Overview of the planted zones with diverse bamboo all over PermaTree

The bamboo reforestation is a long-term transformation process which was started at PeermaTree back in March 2016 (History). Until today over 1000 diverse bamboo seedlings have been successfully transplanted over a area of about 10 hectares. Now

Transporting bamboo 1 year old bamboo seedlings from the nursery to MachuPichu

So on this saturday 25th july 2020, we have managed to plant 57 bamboo plants! 44 Guadua angustifolia and 5 Dendrocalamus asper and 8 Phyllostachys.

Additionally to the bamboo reforestation we have been able to identify local shrubs and trees that attract insects and birds because of their flowers. They are growing all over the areas so the seeds have been lying in the soil for some time and now they are sprouting. And they attract more bio-diversity. The bamboo does the same thing for the birds and reptiles.

Bamboo and Fauna

Bamboo offers many important resources to animals, including food (seeds, shoots, leaves, insects, etc.), and cover from enemies. There are two main properties that the bamboo provides that attract birds. Firstly, the shoots and leaves provide birds with good nesting material, while the plants themselves are an excellent source of cover, protecting the birds from predators and the weather elements. When you plant bamboo you enhance your local biodiversity.

More photos of bamboo and how it enhances biodiversity in especially fauna like birds and reptiles (snakes). Flickr photo album with wildlife birds in bamboo. Also you can check the iNaturalist profile to see all the identified species of the flora and fauna at Permatree Wildlife Conservation in Ecuador.

This region is one of the very few last remaining MEGA biodiversity hot spots of the planet earth because of its remote location and also its a natural wildlife corridor from the great amazon basin to the Andes Mountains range for the remaining wildlife.

Identified Wildlife on Bamboo at Permatree in Ecuador

Permatree Superfoods Presentation

Our operation of regeneration within the production territory with Permatree Superfoods is advancing despite the global challenging situation with COVID19 and the global warming… The last PTSF blog update was in back March 2020 and now its all-ready 13th of July 2020, time flies. As of today we have created our presentation material where you can get a much better understanding of what, why and of course how we are going to do it.

Just in case you have forgotten what PTSF is about. Our mission is to create added value superfoods from: dehydrated seda banana and orito banana, turmeric powder, coffee, raw-chocolate, soursop and guayusa leaf teas. 

Because we are working this on a holistic level it seems slightly more complex at the beginning to understand how we are enhancing the entire horizontal value chain. From the seeds to the transformed added value – superfoods.

In case you want to stay up-to-date on a daily basis you can follow our twitter or instagram too.

Plant Construction Status

In the meantime the construction of the transformation plant for tropical fruits, seeds and vegetables is also well visible from the bird view as you can see yourself. The area itself is not greater than 0.66 hectare in size. But the location is perfect on the main nacional road *Troncal Amazonico E45* connecting us to Loja or Cuenca and from there to Guayaquil or Quito. This drone footage was taken about 1 month ago. Our construction team has been working now since 27 days and its challenging of course with the tropical climate but the transformation is well visible. We are on schedule. Currently we are working 22 day shifts.

Business opportunities – Trade Shows

Due to the COVID19 situation all the existing trade shows have been canceled and some have been reactivated virtually. We have been able to all-ready present the PERMATREE SUPERFOODS innovation at the ECUADOR FOOD FAIR – I Virtual Edition 2020. The first Interactive Food Fair of Ecuador organized by ProEcuador and Fedexpor. Tomorrow the 14 of July we will be present at the #ExpoVirtualAlemania organized by all the latam German Chambers of Commerce Abroad (AHKs) – which are promoting international trade.

The Presentation

Now the information has been prepared for you in various media channels. According to the latest research video content engages most. So below you will find a striped down video version of about 2 minutes for all of you who have no time to waste and are in a hurry.


2 min video duration

YouTube – Permatree Superfoods Presentation (2 min)

Now personally Im not really a big fan of videos … because most of the youtube-videos now a days are just way to long and not really relevant information. So I prefer a slideshow. Below is our 33 page slideshow in English language. There is also a powerpoint-version but with 45MB it’s just way too heavy in data size.


6 min text read

SlideShare slideshow of Permatree Superfoods (33 pages)

And well for those few who do like to read articles here comes the content as classic article with text and lots of images with more text :-).


Holistic + Regenerative + Transparent

PERMATREE SUPERFOODS = Holistic + Regenerative + Transparent
website: | Email and Tel only visible in the image


While the planet earth and our bodies fall victim to destruction, we find hope and solutions in regeneration. Through our holistic business model that values the interconnectedness of all things, and with more than just organic farming methods, we envision a better and brighter future for all living things. It starts here in the Amazon, with a gift from the planet itself – nature’s Superfoods.


The Superfoods: Dehydrated bananas, Ginger, Turmeric, Soursop-Tea, Guayusa-Tea, Raw-chocolate and Coffee
The Superfoods: Dehydrated bananas, Ginger, Turmeric, Soursop-Tea, Guayusa-Tea, Raw-chocolate and Coffee

We have chosen to start with superfoods which we have been consuming ourselves that are rich in nutrients and enhance our health. Also of which we know that they grow well in our mostly extreme tropical humid micro-climate at the edge of the amazon basin in Ecuador.



SUPERFOODS TO THE RESCUE - Its Time to Fix A Very Broken System

Its Time to Fix A Very Broken System


  • Holistic – We care for everything and everyone along the entire production process.
  • Ethical – We make conscientious choices in all we do.
  • Altruistic – Creating a better quality life for everyone is part of our business model.
  • Regenerative – Beyond sustainable, we’re healing and transforming territories.
  • Transparent – 100% trust because we’re super proud of everything we’re doing.

Three Guys With a Vision, and On a Mission.

PermaTree SuperFoods is a independent startup, based in the Amazon basin of  Ecuador, founded by three visionary entrepreneurs sick and tired of the outdated agriculture-to-market system that oppresses the family farmer and lies to the consumers. We think everyone deserves better – those who are producing food, those who are eating it, as well as the many creatures and lands  that are silently affected in the process of exploitive, conventional systems.

We want to be the most conscientious, ethical, and empowering company to cultivate nutritious, health enhancing, Superfoods from the Amazon through transparent processes and regenerative agriculture. We want our holistic business model to be the force behind territorial transformation that creates thriving social, economic, and environmental situations for all. We believe we can reverse the damage, enhance the soil with flora and fauna
to bring back a natural equilibrium, and cultivate a brighter future.

Meet The Guys

Permatree Superfood’s Founders


Walter Villacis, CEO
Experience in socio-organizational federations small producers and public / private companies in Ecuador. Focused on the standard- ization of value-added processes with organic certification, commercialization and export.
Linkedin : Walter Villacis

Jago Jan Veith, COO
Experience in SMB, Fortune 500 and mHealth startup. Focusing on innovation in e-commerce, marketing and communication. Passion: regenerative disruption by applying innovation processes to create a better world in the future.
Linkedin : Jago Jan Veith

Danny Carrillo, DPR
Experience in entrepreneurship and family businesses in the agriculture industry and public companies / private SMEs in Ecuador. Focused on coordination between ministries, organizations and producers related to productive value-added systems in the territory.
Linkedin : Danny Carrillo

Our Company Timeline

Our Company Timeline
PERMATREE SUPERFOODS S.A., was created on November 6, 2019, as recorded in the commercial register of the Canton Yantzaza in Ecuador under registration number 45, repertoire 1544 of the Companies register.


Birdview of PermaTree Superfoods and the Finca Yantza

Our Interconnected System

Everything Within The Territory


We grow our own raw ingredients on our farm, as well as work with 400+ family farmers who use our systematic regenerative farming model. This allows us to know exactly what we are producing from it’s very start and to empower other locals to better their farming methods,territory, lifestyle, and economy


Because we handle every step of the process on site, we harvest at the idea moment as we don’t have to worry about lenghty transport and storage logistics. This allows us to use higher quality ingredients at their freshest point and have direct insight to how our crops and orchards are doing


We own and operate our own processing plant on site where we use processes that maintain the purity and nutrition of our raw ingredients so we can provide  REAL Superfoods that maintain their health benefits – something our competitors are not doing.


We pack on site too. We use minimal packaging that preserves the integrity and freshness of our products. All products are marked with a QR code that when scanned, link to videos related to each specific product providing more detailed information.


Directly from the same location, we ship out our products nationally and export internationally. From start to finish, we handle the entire production process of our Superfoods.

The highest quality Superfoods from the Amazon; grown in micro-lots, from a unique single origen, minimally processed, packaged to preserve freshness, and shipped directly to you.

Behind The Scenes of our Raw Cacao Chocolate

Behind The Scenes
of our Raw Cacao Chocolate

Transformation of Territory & Healthier Living For All

We integrate regenerative ideas into everything we do,
from the seeds we grow to the cells in your body.

Our farming and production process is regenerating healthy environments, economies, and communities.

  • Regenerative and organic farming methods create healthy ecosystems allowing biodiversity to thrive.
  • Keeping the entire production process on-site, creates more jobs and new business opportunities for locals.
  • Organic farming jobs allows locals to choose a healthier industry to support – versus the common destructive mining industry.
  • More family farms means more families can stay together, creating a healthier lifestyle.

We produce superfoods that are delicious and nutritious that support the regeneration of cells in your body.

  • Our farming methods are 100% clean and natural, without the use of agrochemicals, zero pesticides, zero herbicides and zero chemical fertilizers
  • We don’t add sugar nor ANY preservatives during our food  processing, which means nothing harmful for your body.
  • We use processing methods that preserve the nutrition of these Superfoods so that your can enjoy the full health benefit of each one.


Strategic Goals

Our five strategic objectives and development strategies in the region are:

Transform territory to enhance environment, economy, and society. To work across the value chain in a transparent way with direct and indirect actors. Focus on the beneficial properties of health and well-being.

Develop the production of raw material in collaboration with 400 family farmers with a focus on micro-lots of single origin from the southern territories of the Ecuadorian Amazon.

Rescue and restore the local multicultural identity, focusing on gastronomy, history, culture and ancient medicine.

To go beyond just organic with our vertically intergrated, interconnected, and holistic system, and regenerative agriculture model. No agrochemicals: zero pesticides, zero herbicides and zero chemical fertilizers.

Total transparency to build trust with skeptical consumers. Communicate clearly and precisely to educate, inform, and inspire consumers and buyers.

5 Hemispheric Programs

  1. Bioeconomy and Productive Development.
  2. Territorial Development and Family Farming.
  3. International Trade and Regional Integration.
  4. Climate Change, Natural Resources, and Productive Risk Management.
  5. Agricultural Health, Safety and Food Quality.
  • Gender and Youth
  • Innovation and Technology

Sustainable Development Goals

Sustainable Development Goals
Our business model satisfies all 17 United Nation’s SDGs.
Take a moment to enjoy our view...
Take a moment to enjoy our view…

Principles of Administrative Management

We operate with well organized, professional administration and management.
We operate with well organized, professional administration and management.

Organizational Flowchart

Organizational Flowchart
Organizational Flowchart

Legal Permits and Accreditation

Legal Permits and Accreditation
Legal Permits and Accreditation

Certifications and Quality Seals

Certifications and Quality Seals
Certifications and Quality Seals

Monthly Production Capacity

Monthly Production Capacity
Monthly Production Capacity

Our Unique Products SUPERFOODS Straight From The Amazon

BANANITOS - Dehydrated banana slice, dice
BANANITOS – Dehydrated banana slice, dice


Amazing Antioxidant & Anti-Inflammatory Powder



Dynamic DNA Damage Prevention Powder


Soursop Tea

Soursop Tea (Annona muricata)
Soursop Tea (Annona muricata)
From The Amazon Straight to Your Cup
From The Amazon Straight to Your Cup

Guayusa Tea

Guayusa Tea - contain L-theanine, theobromine and caffeine
Guayusa Tea – contains L-theanine, theobromine and caffeine

Raw Chocolate

Raw Chocolate (Theobroma cacao)
Raw Chocolate (Theobroma cacao)


Coffee – Mood & Brain Boosting

Guadua Bamboo Reforestation at PermaTree in Ecuador

Transformation by bamboo reforestation

Since January 2020 we have been weekly and daily planting a handful of bamboos within the so denominated “MachuPichu” zone near the main PermaTree bamboo house. Before January 2020 we transplanted larger areas with bamboo and amounts of bamboo plants in 5-10 days in a row. But with a team of 5 persons helping on site here at Finca Yantza in PermaTree, Ecuador.

How are we approaching the reforestation? Are we reforesting all the 80Has? Or half of it? Hell no. We are selecting zones. Which are critical. Those zones can be lined up plants or “pata gallina” triangular (A-Shape 3 plants. Next V-shape 3 plants. etc. ) to densify the reforestation effect. Lets call it a smarter approach than reforesting 50’000 seedlings on 50Has area. Why? Well actually we are just helping nature to do it’s job. But slightly designing it… This is also sometimes called “assisted natural regeneration strategy” or “applied nucleation”. Also “tree islands”. This which involves planting only a very small number of seedlings that attract birds and other seed dispersers, which can spread seeds around the tree islands / zones. Gradually, these tree islands turn into intact diverse forests. Additionally we have been able to identify local trees that attract birds because of their flowers which are growing all over the areas so the seeds have been lying in the soil for some time and now they are sprouting.

Now that there are only a very few uf us left here. Normally 1 or 2 persons which have time for the transplanting of seedlings, the process is fragmented over a much larger amount of time. But never less we don’t stop. This is a long-term transformation process which was started back in March 2016 (History). Until today over 1000 diverse bamboo seedlings have been successfully transplanted. Aside to the more than 6000 diverse tropical fruit trees. All in various selected more or less accesible areas of 0,25 to 1.25 Has in size.

Long-term Transformation

The process takes some time. First the bamboo plants need to have a size and a amount of leafs to be able to survive within their new natural soundings once transplanted. This generally means thats the seedling will be taken care off for about 12 month before being transplanted at its final destination. Depending on the bamboo species, after the duration of 12 month the seedling is already over 150cm tall. Before the final transplanting act we need to clean the area where the whole will be dug for the seedling. The area around the hole needs to be cleaned from other plants so that the seedling will receive enough sun rays to grow fast. This takes time and needs to be repeated during the first 12 month after transplanting the seedling. Normally ever 2-4 weeks depending what seeds are trying to sprout from the soil. 

Birdview of the bottom part of the farm. All orange areas have bamboo. Yellow are is MachuPichu with pink circles representing one bamboo plant.

Bamboo reforestation status Jan to 14st May 2020

  • 10 Feb 2020 – Reforestation with bamboo! Here goes another giant bamboo (Dendrocalamus asper)
  • 23 Feb 2020 – More Guadua angustifolia “caña brava” transplanting 
  • 24 Feb 2020 – 14 bamboo transplanted in degraded cattle farming land
  • 18 March 2020 – Transplanting more Guadua angustifolia kunth brava
  • 29 March 2020 – Another day transplanting bamboo
  • 29 April 2020 – 10 bamboo plants
  • 7 May 2020 –  Total 9 plants: Moso bambú, Phyllostachys nigra, Fargesia robusta campbell
  • 10 May 2020 – 6 plants: Dendrocalamus asper, Moso bambú, Phyllostachys nigra, Fargesia robusta campbell
  • 14 May 2020 – Reforested a total of 9 bamboos 
Lowest part of the MachuPichu zone with Bamboo (Guadua angustifolia Kunth) on terraces.

Cattle farming

Cattle farming have caused extensive environmental damage in the amazon basin. And over-grazing of cattle, has been a significant cause of soil degradation. Step by step we are transforming this again into a microorganism enhances tropical humid soil. 

Reforestation with Bamboo

I have noticed that reforestation is not a big topic at all. It should be. There is no reforestation program I know of in Ecuador. Its not because it would not be needed. Yearly deforestation is at its all time high. Its just – not – yet a priority for anybody. Once there is no more fresh air. Like already know in the local cities. Time will make the people plants trees again. Time will tell. I believe. Never-less I also believe its key to talk about reforestation and spread the word. With bamboo its slightly faster – after waiting the 6 years till the bamboo plant is mature. And 30% of its trunks can be harvested, ideally at good moon, so it will last for very very long. Also don’t forget that harvesting the mature bamboo trunks (30%) will give the bamboo plant more energy again for young shoots. Its a cicle. 

Why do we at PermaTree believe that bamboo is much more than “only bamboo”?

Bamboo is amazing. Once you have all the relevant knowledge about bamboo and the uses you will be speechless. 

Did you know the following general bamboo facts?

  • Bamboo is technically a grass although you’ve likely seen it mistakenly described as a wood due to its tree-like appearance
  • Bamboo is extremely diverse, there are 1575 Bamboo species across five continents
  • Produces 30% more oxygen than the average tree 
  • Some bamboo shoots are edible. A common ingredients in stir-frys, soups, spring rolls, dumplings, and lots of other savory dishes.
  • Medicinal: Bamboo resin, leaves, and shavings are said to have medical uses for respiratory and digestive illnesses, fevers, and inflammation. In general, being around Bamboo reduces anxiety/stress and may decrease depression.
  • (co2 sequestration) How fast a plant grows has a part in determining how much CO2 it can absorb in a given time. One hectare (100×100 meters) of “moso bamboo” species can store up to 250 tons of carbon. 
  • It enhances biodiversity by giving new spaces to all kind of fauna such as birds, snakes and microorganisms which are linked to the bamboo root network. There is even a specific bamboo mushroom.
  • Bamboo plants prevent erosion on hillsides 
  • Bamboo requires no chemicals to thrive
  • History: Bamboo played a role in one of the first light bulbs that Thomas Edison initially created. Edison and his colleagues discovered that a carbonized bamboo filament in a light bulb could last over 1,200 hours. This led to the start of large-scale manufactured light bulbs in the year 1880
  • History: Bamboo was used in Alexander Graham Bell’s first phonograph in 1880. The first phonograph needle was made out of Bamboo. 
  • Bamboo actually has a tensile strength greater than steel.
  • Bamboo Is Naturally Antibacterial. Bamboo and cotton were tested for how much bacteria they killed over a 24-hour period, and the bamboo killed nearly all of the bacteria, while the cotton did not kill any.

Pruning Vetiver Grass

The pruning of the vetiver grass at its right time works like a carbon bomb

Like with many other elements within the PermaTree farm we are using vetiver grass, within systems such as the Adaptive Contour and Erosion Control with Vetiver grass and Arachis Pintoi. As usual the more one element can be interconnected with other elements and create more functions. The more value every single element will bring on a macro scale. Our goal is always to be able to stack elements of high value to get a final function of even higher value. Obviously the goal is that all those systems work self sustainably and are ideally regenerative.

Video: Pruning Vetiver Grass

Pruning of vetiver fences up to a height of 30 to 50 cm. prevents these from giving seeds, makes them thicker and consequently more effective in filtering runoff water and erosion.

At the ende of the day vetiver gras is being used at PermaTree in Ecuador for the following use-cases:

  • Crop fertilization with pruned vetiver grass (contains minerals)
  • Erosion control – bioengineering
  • Phytoremediation of water and soil contaminated by heavy metals, hydrocarbons, agrochemicals, and other pollutants.
  • Keep in mind vetiver has more than 1000 uses (construction materials, forage for livestock, landscaping and ornamentals, mulch, compost, veneer, fiber board, ash for concrete work, and insecticide)

Transplanting Vetiver Grass


Vetiver as Photosynthetic Energy Accumulator

Seeing vetiver grass as a “photosynthetic energy accumulator”, both on the ground in the form of plant biomass and under the ground as a creator of fertility due to the fixation of organic carbon, through the decomposition of its roots and the creation of Microbiological networks, we wonder how we can obtain the greatest amount of energy through its pruning or cutting.

1 Year Old Adult Vetiver Grass

vetiver grass 1 year old

Pruning Adult Vetiver Grass

recently pruned vetiver grass

The Logic behind the Pruning the Vetiver Grass

When vetiver grass grows, it reaches a maximum growth point (2 meters), where it stops growing and prepares for flowering and planting. There is the ideal time for its cut, since its roots have also been expressed as much as possible under the ground. In terms of energy saving, the grass, being pruned aerially, immediately cuts its roots, releasing all fertility to the soil. Then, we let the grass grow to its maximum potential, so that it accumulates or “captures” the maximum carbon (load) and then we cut it (it is unloaded). This works like a two-phase carbon pump, with a charge pulse and a discharge pulse.


Certification of Good Agricultural Practices

Certification of Good Agricultural Practices (BAP by its acronym in Spanish) Yantza Farm – PermaTree

Yantza Farm – PermaTree obtained the Certificate of Good Agricultural Practices (BPA) from the Ministry of Agriculture with the register Nr. EC-Z-05-53-PA-G-2019-067 for the following crops: Soursop (Annona Muricata L), Guineo Ceda, Ilex Guayusa and Turmeric (Curcuma longa) on Friday, October 4, 2019.

Good Agricultural Practices or BPAs according to the Ministry of Agriculture “They are a set of principles, standards and technical recommendations applicable to the production, processing and transport of food” with the aim of improving food quality, in order to improve the health of families who consume these foods, take care of the environment and improve the quality of life of workers and their families.

BPAs are important because people are more interested in the traceability and transparency of the origin of their food.

Among the main problems of not having BPA is that food produced may contain residues of agrochemicals, such as herbicides or insecticides, can carry diseases or pests that have some negative effect on the consumers of these foods Contaminated. Unsure of the provenance of our food, farmers will sell fewer products and their income will be reduced.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture, there are 3 fundamental pillars of BPAs:

  1. Food safety: Ensure that food is free from physical, chemical and biological hazards. 
  2. Quality and environmental management: Ensure the care of water, soil, native plant species, beneficial insects and natural sweeps.
  3. Occupational safety: To seek the health of farmers, the proper use of protective tools and equipment, training on the importance of their work in the field.

Why be BPA?

By being BPA certificated we can obtain better quality and healthier products for consumers, it guarantees the health and well-being of workers. Children from working families can go to school, production becomes sustainable over time and you have the opportunity to reach more competitive markets.

You can also have better control over the production of the farms. With better quality food yields are improved, farmers can improve their income, improving their quality of life.

Steps to obtain BPA

  1. History of the agricultural production unit and land selection
  2. Properly prepare the soil to prevent degradation and washing
  3. Plan the planting of crops and establish them
  4. Perform maintenance and care during the production cycle
  5. Fertilization to add nutrients to the soil to improve production
  6. Perform integrated pest management (IPM)
  7. Control the quality of water entering crops
  8. Properly handle products in harvest, transport and post-harvest.
  9. Keep production areas clean and disinfected
  10. Provide well-being and care to workers.
  11. Protecting and maintaining natural resources
  12. Traceability system, documentation and records for transparent processes.

Information obtained from AGROCALIDAD in Ecuador.

BPA at Yantza Farm – PermaTree

It is important to understand that organic production systems are the most natural and sustainable in time, as they are the closest thing to nature. these systems use natural resources and do not use chemicals that affect biodiversity and the balance of productive areas.

The Yantza Farm – PermaTree, is the first farm in the province of Zamora Chinchipe. Being an organic and permaculture farm, it aims to make consumers know what production processes are like. From the selection of plants that are sown, in this case soursop, which is the largest crop, to the process of added value and packaging of the products.

An important part of the estate is also the holistic approach it has. It is understood that the entire system is related and it is important to protect and maintain each of the elements of the system, from the smallest insects and microorganisms in the soil, to the larger animals such as the birds and trees that give shelter to them.

By implementing BPAs, you seek to obtain the best production results, taking care of the plants and giving them the necessary resources naturally for them to produce continuously. However, the most important thing is to get quality products and not necessarily quite poor-quality harvest.

The soil handling is a bit complex, as the area is not completely flat. Erosion is a big problem. With the large amount of rain that this area has, the soil is washed and the productive part is lost. For the management of this have been chosen to make terraces at level, every 5 meters to facilitate the planting and management of crops.

The use of plant toppings is important to reduce the impact of rain on the soil. For this it was chosen to use forage peanuts, as it is an excellent nitrogen fixer, resists trampling and is good at colonizing areas, thus reducing the spread of weeds.

Vetiver has also been planted on the edges of the terraces to prevent them from moving. The roots of the vetiver can grow up to 15 m, and this helps to hold the earth.

Near the productive areas are planted different native plants with flowering that attract insects. This in order to conserve native species, both flora and fauna, since insects help pollination, obtaining better results in production and quality.

For weed control, it is fumigated with urea, which is toxic in large quantities only for grasses. This applies when grasses start to appear again and make it difficult for other plants to grow

In this way, the PermaTree farm implements BPA’s, always taking into account the component, productive, economic and above all, environmental.