SAMAI’s snacks are made out of premium plantains, bananas and  veggies grown and hand harvested in small farms on the Pacific coast of Ecuador, South America.

They ripen naturally on the tree and are carefully transported from the farms to our processing plant, which is located amidst the plantain groves, ensuring that only the freshest of ingredients are used. Upon arrival, the fruits and veggies are carefully inspected and peeled by expert hands, sliced and delicately golden-crisped with non-hydrogenated pure vegetable oil to create a 100% natural, nutritious rainforest snack.

If flavours are used, they are a blend of natural spices and sea salt. No sugar added, no MSG or artificial colours,flavours or aromas. Our ¨Pachamama" (Mother Earth) would have it no other way!

All our snacks are packed under strict quality controls to guarantee their freshness. They are then loaded into maritime containers and sent with our warmest regards and appreciation to our SAMAI® fans worldwide.

Plantains (Musa acuminate or Musa balbisiana) are cooking bananas whose nutritional value and delicious flavour have made them a staple food in many tropical regions around the world. They are eaten either steamed, cooked or as a snack. Their nutritional value is even greater than that of its close relative, the banana.

Plantains are rich in potassium, magnesium and phosphate, and a good source of vitamins A, B6, and C.

Cassava (Manihot esculenta) also known as manioc or yucca is a highly nutritious starchy root originating in South America and eaten in many tropical and subtropical regions worldwide.

Cassava roots contain significant amounts of calcium, phosphorus and vitamin C. The cassava starch pellets are also known as tapioca.

Malanga (Xanthosoma Saggitifolium) also known as tannia or new cocoyam is a staple food in many tropical regions.It is a fairly good source of riboflavin and thiamine and a modest source of iron and vitamin C.

The malanga starch grains are the smallest and the most easily digested of all complex carbohydrates.

Yellow and purple sweet potatoes (Ipomoea batatas) are not only eaten for their delicious flavour and bright color. Besides simple starches, sweet potatoes are rich in complex carbohydrates, dietary fiber, beta carotene (a vitamin A equivalent nutrient), vitamin C, and vitamin B6.

Potatoes are originally from the Andes region. However, some native varieties have almost disappeared due to the extensive cultivation of more poular varieties.

At SAMAI, we have worked in a program with small communities to rescue some native varieties like the purple and pink potatoes (Solanum andigena) grown at high altitudes in the Andean Cordillera.

Although all potatoes contain vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C, vitamin B6 and trace amounts of thiamin, riboflavin, folate, niacin, magnesium and phosphorus,the native Andean potatoes are richer in potassium, iron, zinc and polyphenols (a type of antioxidant).

We use only non-hydrogenated 100% vegetable palmolein to crips our SAMAI snacks. This is the less saturated (more liquid) fraction of the oil that is extracted from the flesh of a palm fruit solely by cooking and pressing. No chemicals are used in the processes of extraction and separation. It is different from palm kernel oil and coconut oil; palmolein has lower levels of saturated components (1).

Like all other vegetable oils, palmolein is cholesterol free and since it does not require hydrogenation, is it also Trans fat free. It is a rich source of tocopherols and tocotrienols (Vitamin E). Red palm oil is the richest natural source of Beta carotene (pro-vitamin A).

The key factors considered in chosing palmolein as the oil to crisps our delicious snacks are:

1.       Palmolein has the perfect balance of  fatty acids to make it stable for high temperatures. Not all types of oils are good for all temperatures and you might be doing yourself more harm than good by using any oil indistinctively.

2.       Palms grow within the same region where the rest of our ingredients: the lowland tropics of Ecuador. We use the freshest oil, while contributing to the local economy.

3.       Last, but not least, the oil that we use comes from plantations outside the protected rainforest. Palms throw a protective green canopy over the environment, many varieties of plants and wildlife develop under it. Thus, they are more effective than soybean plantations in cleaning up the atmosphere when it comes to absorption of CO² (2).

(1) Agriculture Handbook No 8-4 (1979) “Composition of Foods” ES Dept of Agriculture. Science and Educational Administration , Washington D.C.,USA.

(2) Oil Palm.. Tree of life, 2006, MPOC.

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