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Shipment to Holland marks first exports to Europe from Latin America

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A Paraguayan food maker is exporting 20 tons of certified organic hulled hempseed in a first food shipment to Europe.

Minister of Agriculture and Livestock, Moisés Bertoni said most of the shipment, from Healthy Grains, Luque, Paraguay, is headed to Nutland, BV, Rijswijk, Netherlands, while one ton is being sent to another unidentified destination within the European Union.

The hemp was grown in Paraguay during the 2020-2021 summer growing season in the southern hemisphere.

Rare company

Paraguay is believed to be only the third country to export hemp seeds into the European Union, which has been importing seeds from Canada and China for several years.

The shipments were inspected in Paraguay by the National Plant and Seed Health and Quality Service (Senave), the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAG), the Ministry of Industry and Commerce (MIC) and the National Anti-Drug Secretariat (Senad), Bertoni said.

The seeds were approved and certified 100% organic and passed sanitation and other tests performed by EUROFINS, a Dutch laboratory, according to Healthy Grains.

Two growing seasons

“Prices are good and the varieties are showing promising performance,” said Bertoni. “Soon we believe that it will be one more alternative for producers to have income crops. It can be done even in winter.”

A ceremony marking the milestone was held over the weekend at Luque’s Nuestra Señora de la Asunción Industrial Park, where Healthy Grains operates dehulling and protein production lines as well as an extraction facility.

MAG said there are about ten companies authorized and in the process of being authorized to produce hemp in Paraguay as pilot growing operations are spread throughout the country, in San Pedro, Alto Paraná, Cordillera, Itapúa and Guairá.

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