Peruvian alpaca herdsmen represent one of the most relegated sectors of society. Their incomes are low, and the state provides them only with deficient education and health-care services. Their dispersion and physical location among the high and extensive mountainous regions of the Andes contributes negatively to their current standard of living. It is therefore a duty, particularly of those who process alpaca and who use the final products, to lend a helping hand to those who, from time immemorial, have been raising these magnificent animals in extremely hostile conditions.
For “PACOMARCA: Sustainable Alpaca Network” this collaboration with alpaca producers should not be of merely assistentialist nature. While the disinterested support of firms and individuals is necessary and urgent in order to carry out certain types of human aid actions requiring immediate attention and which cannot be postponed, it is also true that the most productive and long-lasting help stems from the establishment of bases to increase the income levels of the tens of thousands of families who raise alpacas in Perú. In this sense, the genetic improvement of the alpaca in order to improve quality and yield of the fibre they produce turns out to be the best bet for a sustained improvement in the quality of life of the herdsmen