Dominican Rep.: Greenhouse production facing serious difficulties

Despite the fact that greenhouse agriculture has been deemed the most promising in the Dominican Republic for exporting purposes, the financial power needed for its maintenance and development is leading to serious problems, due to severe technical deficiencies, poor planning, mismanagement in the commercialisation and insufficient funding.

This was stated by Juan Chávez, executive director of the National Council of Agricultural, Livestock and Forestry Research (CONIAF) during the meeting organised by the National Confederation of Agricultural and Livestock Producers (CONFENAGRO) with executives and members of the Greenhouse Cluster.

During the event, Chávez addressed the high cost of the inputs needed for greenhouse cultivation, as well as the lack of stability in the supply of electrical power, in addition to the lack of specialized technical training of the producers to adequately carry out precision crop management in controlled environments.

Under the topic "Agricultural model in a controlled environment", Chávez addressed the limitations and advantages of maintaining greenhouses, stating that "not everyone can do it in the Dominican Republic," taking into account that seeking technical assistance is mandatory.

There were also discussions between all sorts of national producers regarding the anticipated productive restructuring project of San Juan Valley, which will have a cost of more than 13,880 million pesos (331 million dollars), as announced by the Government earlier this year.

Producers from various regions concluded that growers' opinions are being ignored by the project, "which is why it is doomed to fail."

Eric Rivero, president of CONFENAGRO, pointed out that the country has both the markets and producers to generate revenue through greenhouses.

José Miguel de Peña, president of the Greenhouse Cluster, said that, although the tendering of 6 million square metres for greenhouses in the Valley of San Juan this year is a reason for satisfaction, the situation has also raised concerns.

Peña explained that these concerns arise from the need to introduce the necessary technology and the training of technicians, which is why he believes that a discussion is needed.


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