Once a skeptic, Paiwan woman keeping family’s quinoa legacy alive

Focus Taiwan
Date: 2017/05/22
By CNA reporter Kuo Chu-chen and staff writer Elizabeth Hsu

Chang Chih-yun (張誌紜) had a good career going, having worked as a physical therapist at a hospital for 17 years. But that did not stop her from quitting this year to keep a promise she made to cultivate a grain she grew up hating and continue a family tradition.

Chang now devotes her time to growing quinoa, which in Taiwan is a traditional aboriginal crop, on her family’s land in Sandimen Township of Pingtung County and carry on the family legacy left by her grandmother, a wine brewer in their tribal community.

The 37-year-old from the Paiwan community, one of 16 officially recognized indigenous peoples in Taiwan, grew up in quinoa fields, she says, recalling watching her grandmother plant the crop from when she was little.

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