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Term Agriculture
en inglés

The art and technique of cultivating land, which includes diverse types of soil treatments and crops of various vegetables, serving mainly for nourishment purposes. The most common crops grown around the world include various cereals (wheat, rice, barley, etc.), fruits and vegetables.

Agriculture has always been the base of Dominican Republic economy. Although the service industry surpassed it as en employment provider, the agricultural sector remains today as the most important, in terms of domestic consumption and maintains its position among one of the most important in terms of exports. According to 2009 data, agriculture contributed 12,203.9 million pesos to the national economy, which corresponds to 3.56% of the gross domestic product. 1

The main cash crops in the Dominican Republic are produced in large plantations, located primarily in the Northeast and in the southern coastal plain, although most farmers are engaged in subsistence farming. 2   Cultivation of sugar cane remains one of the major cash crops (in 2009 more than 100 billion quintals were produced). Other important crops are bananas, rice, tomatoes, cassava and plantains.1

The products that make up the agricultural subsector are grouped by crops: cereals, tubers, oilseeds, leguminous plants, fruits, vegetables and Musaceae.

• Cereals are a group of herbaceous plants whose grains or seeds are the most important nutrient source in the world. The main cereals available in the Dominican Republic are rice, corn and sorghum.

• Roots and tubers are very important because they constitute a major source of employment in rural areas and contribute to meet the energetic and nutritional requirements of more than two billion people in developing countries. After cereals, these are the most important crops in the domestic agricultural production, and they are highly significant in shaping the daily diet in the country. Among them are cassava, potatoes, sweet potatoes, taro and yams.

• Oilseeds are seeds that are edible or used for oil extraction. The oilseeds group is made up primarily of peanuts and coconuts.

• The main purpose of leguminous plants, which occupy a privileged place among the crops, is the use of their seeds both in animal and human food, mainly thanks to their high protein content. They are also considered soil enhancing crops and are used in rotation, because they fix atmospheric nitrogen to the soil. The main locally produced leguminous plants are beans (red, white and black) and pigeon peas.

• Fruits make up a group of tree or shrub species, the fruits of which are eaten fresh, processed or prepared in juice or mixed with other products. The main fruits produced in the country include avocado, sweet orange, papaya, passion fruit and pineapple.

• Vegetables are one of the most important groups in Dominican agricultural production. Among them tomato, onion, garlic, eggplant and pumpkin stand out.

• Musaceae are generally large herbaceous plants which have a pseudo-trunk formed by the hard base of its leaves. The most commonly grown in the Dominican Republic are bananas and plantains.

Organic agriculture is also an important component of the agricultural  sector. Currently, the Dominican Republic is one of the leading exporters worldwide of tropical organic products such as bananas, cocoa, avocado, coffee and mango.2


1. Departamento de Economía Agropecuaria. Informaciones Estadísticas del Sector Agropecuario de Republica Dominicana 2000-2009 [en línea]; Ministerio de Agricultura: Santo Domingo, D.N., 2010. <> (Consulta: 20 mayo 2009).

2. FAO (Organización de las Naciones Unidas para la Agricultura y la Alimentación); CCI (Centro de Comercio Internacional UNCTAD/OMC); CTA (Centro Técnico para la Cooperación Agrícola y Rural). Los mercados mundiales de frutas y verduras orgánicas: Oportunidades para los países en desarrollo en cuanto a la producción y exportación de productos hortícolas orgánicos [en línea]; FAO: Roma, IT., 2001. <> (Consulta: 22 mayo 2009).



Additional Information
TableVolume of production of major crops, 2000-2009
Topic  Forest resources