Mango: a fruit that is popular in all seasons
Santo Domingo, DR
Between the banilejo, gota de oro, mimillo, or Yamaguí, the mango is one of the favorite fruits of the Dominican par excellence, as evidenced by the expected season of this crop that is already part of the Dominican identity and seeks to position itself in the foreign market.
The flowers on the mango trees announce that the so-called mango season is just around the corner. Of course, some varieties already bear fruit, but what they have in common, regardless of whether they are green or ripe, is that this sweet fruit is enjoyed by young and old alike.
Although, according to data, this is originally from South Asia and was later introduced to Africa and then to America in the sixteenth century, its flavor and aroma have made them a prized fruit in the countries of the Americas and the Caribbean, and the Dominican Republic, during the season, mangoes become part of the daily diet. Therefore its cultivation has increased, giving good results at the agro-industrial level.
The president of the Dominican Mango Cluster, Rafael Leger, told Listín Diario that although this crop had no growth several years ago, the Dominican mango has managed to reach countries not only in the American continent but also in Europe, and soon they are looking to be located in Asian countries, such as Japan and Korea.
He said that Asian countries “are markets that we are working to see how we can reach them, although they are a bit far away, to the extent that they know the Dominican mango, we know that they will like it, and we will continue to grow in markets that we have not yet reached.
Among the countries to which the Dominican mango is most exported are the United States and Canada, the first being the leader among foreigners in acquiring this crop, where the mingolo mango is exported, which is produced in Baní and is characterized by being yellow, while to Europe, the variety that is exported is the Keith, red.
He affirmed that since the creation of the Mango Cluster between 2003-2004, the quantities of Dominican mango exported went from 300,000 boxes to 7.7 million per year, a figure that shows a considerable increase that makes its producers proud.
Most popular varieties
According to Leger, the most consumed varieties are banilejo, Yamaguí, and grano de oro. Among the introduced types are Keith and Tommy Atkins, with banilejo being the favorite of Dominicans.
“If you ask any Dominican which mango he likes the most, he will tell you that it is the banilejo mango,” said the guild president.
He added that they are currently working to create a variety of banilejo mango that is larger so that consumers can better use them.
Although mango trees are easy to see in the backyards or fronts of some homes in different sectors of the country, there are some elements to consider so that these much-desired fruits grow healthy and can be used to the fullest.
Among the factors that most influence the growth of mango trees for commercial purposes is the climate, since it is a fruit that is best produced in dry areas, along with fertilization and irrigation. However, it is possible to be grown in high or cold regions.
National Mango Board
The National Mango Board, the organization in charge of promoting and researching mango cultivation in the United States, invited the Mango Cluster of the Dominican Republic to its last meeting of its directors at the end of the year 2022, held in Orlando, Florida.
At this meeting, several aspects were highlighted, including the exponential increase in the U.S. market for Dominican mango exports, which have grown by an average of 30% in the last two years.
The activity consisted of two days of meetings of the NMB Board of Directors and the Mango Cluster, attended by former President Hipólito Mejía, Dominican exporters with hydrothermal treatment plants, and the public sector represented by the Minister of Agriculture, Director of Plant Health, among others.