Esentium’s roots are in farming, in the ground.
A third generation farmer in western Nicaragua – a region long known for its rich volcanic soils – our founder, Julio, experienced first-hand the vulnerability of farming to climate change and witnessed broad-scale soil erosion and dust storms that affected his health and the wellbeing of local communities.
As a result, Julio began intuitively implementing more sustainable farming practices with soil conservation and enrichment techniques. After more research and experimentation, Julio concluded that perennial crops should play a more important role in agriculture in leveraging the sun’s energy year-round and in eliminating the adverse conditions that left soil bare and exposed during dry and windy seasons of the year.
In addition to providing ground cover and more tolerance to droughts, many perennial crops also provide more healthy and sustainable products. This interest in perennial crops led to Julio’s encounter with moringa which resulted in his sense of mission to launch Esentium as a platform for creating new value chains that produce products that are good for people in a way that’s good for the planet and local communities.
During its early years, Esentium focused on identify, selecting and validating the best moringa trees for propagation and seed production. Esentium continues to test different plantation densities, irrigation schemes and intercropping systems to take full advantage of Nicaragua’s year-long growing season and fertile soils. Esentium continues to experiment with vermiculture, compost and other organic production practices.
Today, Esentium owns and operates certified organic moringa groves. In addition to moringa, Esentium is developing other perennial crops with the potential to provide healthy and sustainable products for people and the planet. These include light green-skinned avocados, chaya (tree spinach) and pitahaya (dragon fruit).