Customs

Working Together Makes Fields Flourish

People Working a Field in Ayni (Walter Coraza Morveli)

In this season a lot of food is growing in Cusco’s provinces, especially in the district of Maras. There you will find potatoes, corn, quinoa, kiwicha and barley. These are the crops that stand out right now.

The way that the people grow food is amazing. Nobody could imagine it. In Maras the people grow their crops in a form we call ainy. Ainy is a word in Qechua and is very important in our city and also in our provinces.

A Field of Kiwicha in the Sacred Valley
A Field of Kiwicha in the Sacred Valley

Every time the farmers begin to grow they tell their neighbors and on a certain day they all get together to perform the labor. It is just part of their life. Neighbors, friends, and family members come together to carry out the projects of farming, as well as others. When they finish they will have a lot of food to share and sell.

In order to harvest good food they must first do some things with the Mother Earth. They first till the ground. Now most people do this with the help of a tractor in order to do it more quickly and efficiently. It used to be they would do their farm-work with the help of a chakitaqlla, a digging stick, as well as a shovel and a pick.

Merienda Uchu a Special Dish for Lunch to share in the Fields (Walter Coraza Morveli)
Merienda Uchu a Special Dish for Lunch to share in the Fields (Walter Coraza Morveli)

Once the people finish a task of hard work they come together with much joy. Their faces reflect happiness and they sit down together to eat delicious food, such as huatia, potatoes baked in the earth, and drinking chicha and frutillada.

Their harvest will be sent to many cities and in the city of Cuzco their products already are found in our markets making all the rest of us happy too.

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