Colombian Farmers Donate Zinc Rice to Coronavirus-Stricken Cartagena

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“One by one we are all mortal. Together, we are eternal.”

These words of solidarity, written in the second century by Roman writer Apuleius, ring true in these times of COVID19-driven upheaval. Indeed, the farmers of Leticia, a vulnerable community near Cartagena, Colombia, embodied this sentiment when they decided recently to donate their precious zinc-biofortified rice production to the people of Cartagena — one of the locations in the country most affected by the current pandemic.

“We decided to donate 400 kilos of paddy rice. That comes out to about 250 kilos of rice to consume,” said Elías Marimon, a community leader affiliated with the Association of Agricultural Producers of Leticia and Canal del Dique. “Our rice is biofortified and will help with nutrition for our friends in Cartagena. We will give it all to the Municipal Unit of Agricultural Technical Assistance (UMATA) so that it can reach the mayor [of Cartagena] and let him decide how to distribute it.”

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