Quinoa Phenotypic and Genotypic Diversity for Yield and Composition

Acronym: QuinoaDiversity

Timespan: 04.2017 - 03.2020

Recently, it has been established that quinoa grains have remarkable nutritional properties with high quality protein and contain essential amino acids - which are scarce in other cereals - fats, flavonoids, vitamins and minerals, joint to the fact to be gluten-free. Moreover, quinoa has a carbon and water footprint which is 30-60 times lower than beef in value. Quinoa represents a healthy and sustainable food choice which can be of particular interest for the food industry as it could be sold in upscale market products.The project QuinoaDiversity (fig. 1) will provide an insight into quinoa diversity including the occurrence of genotypes with wide adaptability to cultivation environments characterized by low water availability and high salinity. In addition, it will evaluate options for cultivating quinoa in Northern European environments and the possibility to establish modern breeding programs both in Chile and in Germany. The characterization of the composition of seeds and other plant organs for secondary metabolites that confer undesired properties for human consumption will be essential for exploiting the findings in view of product development for the food industry. At the same time, the results of this project will be essential for evaluating the alternative use of these compounds in novel extraction processes that could benefit different industries.

© Uni Bonn

Figure 1: Project design

In this framework, the TIM Chair group contributes to the QinoaDiversity project within the WP4 by tackling the following research goals:

a) Design and assess quinoa's value chain including derived products and cascadeuses of by-products

  • Detecting the potentially interested industrial sectors where quinoa and its derivatives can have a successful market (IP and patent analysis)
  • Identification of key actors in the value chain (farmers and processors)
  • Emerging value chain analysis with identification of chain resources and competencies as well as knowledge and technology gaps; investigation of network and open innovation models to provide potentially successful business models
  • Identifying possible end-uses of quinoa by-products (from WP3) and value chain analysis to identify potential industrial applications.

b) Evaluate the market adoption at B2B level as well as market acceptance at B2C level of quinoa and its derived products.

  • Evaluation of the farmers’ and processors’ willingness to engage, respectively, in quinoa cultivation and production (expert interviews, focus groups, quantitative survey)
  • Evaluation of consumer awareness and acceptance of quinoa and its derived products in Germany. This information will serve as feedback for genetic selection and, in general, for further focusing the other work packages

c) Identify market entry options vs barriers for quinoa and its derived products

  • Evaluation of potential market entry options, like possible differentiation strategies, associated with the application of a “price premium” to the products derived from quinoa (primary and secondary data)
  • Identification of eventual market entry barriers such as missing standards, missing competences, missing trust, missing access to value chains, missing downstream processing technology, and potentially high costs (primary and secondary data)


Dr. Sukhada Bidkar - Dr. Laura Carraresi

Institute for Food and Resource Economics

Chair for Technology and Innovation Management in Agribusiness

Phone: +49-(0)228-73-35 2141 - +49-(0)228-73-35 3504

Email: s.khedkar@ilr.uni-bonn.de – l.carraresi@ilr.uni-bonn.de

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