Achuar Community in the Ecuadorian Amazon Rainforest
The Achuar are a collective, ancient and self-sufficient nation of people settled in their ancestral territory in the current Ecuadorian provinces of Pastaza and Morona Santiago.
The name Achuar comes from achu, the Jivaro name for the Morete palm tree which grows in flat and flooded regions, and the shuar word for "people". Thus, they are known as achu shuar ("people of Morete") or, in brief, Achuar.
The Achuar practice micro-scale "pioneering slash and burn cultivation", which means that they regularly establish new garden plots (known as "chakras") in areas of virgin forestage continually being established in areas of virgin forest. An average chakra can be used for a period of about 3 years before being left to cultivate a new plot.
They live out of hunting, fishing and gathering in the Amazon rainforest. The Achuar's most important food and beverage is the nijiamanch, commonly known as Chicha. It is obtained by the fermentation of previously chewed manioc. Women are in charge of making and serving this drink to guests. Fishing and hunting are also essential for the provision of protein.
Currently, the Achuar are organize in a federation named NAE (Achuar nationality of Ecuador) www.nacionalidadachaurecuador.org. Which is composed of 77 communities that represent approximately 7,000 Achuar who live in the territory of the Pastaza River basin, located in the Ecuadorian provinces of Pastaza and Morona Santiago, still Ecuador Amazon Rainforest territory.