Alicia Medina

A Cajamarca woman at heart, engineer Alicia Medina Hoyos works in the National Institute of Agricultural Innovation’s National Maize Program, where she has spearheaded a research project since 2016. This project has achieved an improved varietal of purple maize known as INIA 601, exceptionally rich in antioxidants and cancer-fighting properties.

Together with farmers from seven villages in the district of Ichocán, province of San Marcos in Cajamarca, Medina began to experiment with crossbreeding among six varieties of maize, thus giving birth to INIA 601. The local farmers’ knowledge of the soil and the maize plant were fundamental in this process.