The Agromatic program is dedicated to raise awareness about the local resources and products from the regions of Costa Rica. This is achieved through the use of advanced technologies and the establishment of alliances with universities, government, the private sector and the CeNAT laboratories, among others.  This program is part of the area of environmental management of the Centro Nacional de Alta Tecnología – National Center for Advanced Technologies- (CeNAT-CONARE).

We characterized local products at the genetic level identifying the genes required for qualities and the variability of a species of interest. For instance, we look at the genes that code for specific environmental adaptations or resistance against plagues. The species that we analyze are selected based on previous knowledge about their remarkable organoleptic and culinary features.  Furthermore, morpho-agronomic, physicochemical and biochemical characterizations grant us access to the nutritional content of the products.   Using these advanced technologies, we assess whether a product fulfills the technical conditions to deserve a distinctive mark of high quality, such as “protected designation of origin” (PDO), “protected geographical indication” (PGI), or “traditional specialities guaranteed” (TSG). We seek to determine the origins and applications of the different products as well as the good use of their industrial byproducts. The information gathered is also essential to face situations that cause food insecurity such as natural disasters, climate variability, deforestation and harvest lost.

The Agromatic program also works in alliance with the Slow Food movement for the promotion of clean, environmentally friendly and fair-traded products. In this context, our aim is to reduce the interference of the middle-man, so that the farmer’s family profits directly from its work. This also benefits the educated consumer, who appreciates the effort of the farmers to sustainably produce healthy products.

Areas of work

  • Ensure food security through alliances with the Slow Food community.
  • Raise awareness about the quality of Costa Rican products. We perform studies on the nutritious value of our products using advanced technologies, not only for the food industry, but also seeking the innovation in areas such as preventative medicine.
  • Harmonization of laws and policies in order to understand food from an integrative point of view. This is accomplished through the work of interdisciplinary groups that help to differentiate and appreciate our products.
  • Strengthening and coaching of small agroecological companies, artisanal businesses, cookers, restaurant owners, on sustainability and the added value of their resources.
  • Participation in international and national fairs along with representatives of Earth Market.
  • Interdisciplinary studies in cooperation with the laboratories of CeNAT.

Contact: psanchez@cenat.ac.cr