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Abaca: modern slavery in the Ecuadorian fields
Diego Cazar Baquero and Susana Moran. Photography: Luis Arguello. Translation: Aida Calderon

The decorticator removes the excess water of the abaca. But, a fiber of abaca could become a razor. Many have been mutilated in this process. Workers have not been provided with the appropriate tools.

 

Abaca: modern slavery in the Ecuadorian fields

The decorticator removes the excess water of the abaca. But, a fiber of abaca could become a razor. Many have been mutilated in this process. Workers have not been provided with the appropriate tools.

 

Abaca or Manila Hemp is considered one of the fibers of the future. After the Philipines, Ecuador is the second world producer of this raw material, only in 2018, Ecuador exported 7.233 tons to the United States, Europe, and Asia for the amount of 17,2 million dollars. But at the fields of the company Furukawa, located in the Ecuadorian coast, men, women, and children produce abaca on precarious conditions. 105 workers and former workers reject the violation of their working and basic rights. The manager of the company defended himself.