The Guanaco & South America: A Brief Resource Guide
By ALDEN WICKER
This sidebar is a supplement to Argentina’s Textile Crusader
If you’re looking for some eco-travel ideas that are outside the norm—and that might acquaint you with the guanaco, underappreciated producer of fine fleece—here are a few good places to start.
- To explore some of the guanaco’s territory, begin with Travel + Leisure‘s guide to visiting Patagonia in Chile and Argentina.
- For another way to see the guanaco in the wild, the Sierra Club approves of this wilderness trek through Chile’s new national park in Patagonia, where sheep ranching has been banned.
- An article on why thoughtful consumers and designers are turning away from cashmere and toward alpaca and guanaco fiber.
- Tompkins Conservation (founded by Doug & Suzie Tompkins, of the Esprit brand) is the nonprofit working to preserve Patagonia, but only in Chile. Unfortunately for the guanaco, Chile also allows hunting of these animals.
- In recent years, once wool prices started to rise, ranchers gratefully started giving up on luxury tourism and turning back to sheep ranching.
- Adriana Marina’s initiative, Hecho por Nosotros, has received funding from the Ashoka Globalizer program, which supports sustainable and ethical fashion brands and initiatives.
- Finally, if you want to follow Adriana Marina’s artisanal work (or purchase some luscious clothing made of fine camelid fleece), visit her store, animanà.
Ruth Alden Wicker is an award-winning journalist and sustainable fashion expert.
© 2023 Ruth Alden Wicker. All rights reserved. Under exclusive license to Craftsmanship, LLC. Unauthorized copying or republication of any part of this article is prohibited by law.