In 2017, the Payment for Agrobiodiversity Services (PACS) programme, led by Bioversity International (now the Alliance of Bioversity International and CIAT), was able to distribute barely a bottle cap's worth of amaranth seeds to over 200 farmers across the Cusco region of Peru. The dozens of colored varieties, many with important nutritional characteristics, had all but disappeared from the region as they were displaced by two white commercial varieties that satisfied the globalized market’s demand for uniformity.
This is how the PACS programme intervenes: it incentivizes small farming communities in areas with high crop diversity to continue planting their traditional and rare varieties. The goal is to insure the building blocks of global food security and nutrition through in situ and on-farm genetic resource conservation. The incentives typically take the form of farming equipment or basic household goods. Although budget constraints have been a challenge for PACS pilots, the process of contract bidding allows communities to define the particular material goods that are valuable to them. This has led to general satisfaction despite comparatively modest financial resources.