In centuries past, purple corn was revered by the Incas for its health-giving properties, and to this day it is mainly grown in the Peruvian Andes. It is believed to have anti-inflammatory properties and the ability to boost the immune system and lower blood pressure. But purple corn is still a bit of a secret in Germany. Peruvian Alejandro Leon wants to change this. In May 2015, he founded Albrecht und R GmbH to import purple corn powder and many other products from South America to Europe via Bremen. His approach is to sell the products at a fair price – fair for the Peruvian farmers and for his customers around the world.
Amsterdam today, Bremen tomorrow, Paris the day after – what may sound like a jet-set lifestyle is hard work for Alejandro Leon. The 34-year-old from Peru is the managing director of Albrecht und R GmbH. He travels throughout Europe to sell his products, find business partners and expand his network of contacts. Passion fruit, mangoes, quinoa and chia seed – all are shipped from South America to Bremen, stored here and then sold on. “Storing our products in Germany and selling them from here allows us to price them more competitively, and we are able to react more quickly and with greater flexibility to the market,” Leon says.