Several cocoa projects implemented in Barahona, San Cristóbal and Pedernales
Pedernales—Traditionally, the Dominican Republic has been divided mainly between the North and the South; regional differences have also been expressed in agricultural production. The South has historically been oriented towards coffee, while the North, East, and Northeast are oriented towards cocoa production.
Hecmilio Galván, executive director of the Special Fund for Agricultural Development, has decided to promote several projects that allow the massive planting of cocoa in the South of the country as a way to diversify the production of this region, generate employment and wealth, but above all protect the environment, in addition in this region is also widely promoting coconut, coffee recovery and avocado.
According to Hecmilio Galván, the planting of organic cocoa in the Dominican Republic is a real blessing because this crop creates agroecological and agroforestry farms that protect the vegetation cover of our soils, preserve the water cycle, and also protect biodiversity, accompanied by income to producers due to the secure market for the product.
To encourage the national production of cocoa, the Special Fund for Agricultural Development (FEDA) runs several programs to support cocoa producers in the southern region of the country, which are part of the National Plan for the Transformation and Renewal of the Dominican Cocoa Culture (Tamo en Cacao) implemented by this entity.
Pedernales is an important point in the government’s development agenda because 13 hotels, a port for cruises, and an international airport are being built there. However, its water sources are limited, so it is necessary to protect the mountainous zones to preserve the water cycle.
Thinking about the tourist future of Pedernales, the FEDA Director is executing a plan to promote the planting of cocoa as a diversification of the coffee and avocado crops produced in the José Francisco Peña Gómez District,
Galvan pointed out that this institution also donated to producers of Pedernales, a nursery of 1,000 square meters for the production of plants that are already in operation, and also donated about 100,000 cocoa plants and tools (picks, shovels, machetes, grills, rakes, and wheelbarrows, among others) to about 200 producers, which are already being planted in the Lomas de Pedernales.
In Paraíso de Barahona, the institution benefited 300 producers with the construction of a nursery of 1,000 square meters for the production of plants and the construction of a cocoa collection and fermentation center with an investment of close to 14 million pesos, both projects aimed at increasing production and improving the value added of cocoa.
These projects are being executed with the Cooperativa Agropecuaria de Servicios Múltiples del Municipio de Paraíso (COOPAMUPA) and the Cooperativa Agropecuaria de Servicios Múltiples del Suroeste (COOPASURO). FEDA also donated 100,000 cocoa plants, 50,000 bags for the production of plants, tools for pruning and management of cocoa plantations, and tillage tools to the farmers, said Galván.
The official indicated that FEDA technicians gave ten days of training to the cocoa growers of Paraíso and Pedernales, which included instructions on organic fertilization, harvesting, and post-harvesting of cocoa.
IN SAN CRISTOBAL
FEDA is focused on implementing the National Plan for the Transformation and Renovation of Dominican Cocoa Farming (Tamo en Cacao) throughout the national territory and has delivered more than 1,000 agricultural tools to cocoa producers in Villa Altagracia, La Cuchilla, and Medina belonging to San Cristobal.
The institution has also donated over 30,000 seedlings in Villa Altagracia and intends to present 50,000 seedlings in Yaguate, a new cocoa-growing area for the country.
The delivery of the nursery for the production of cocoa plants in Paraiso and Pedernales, where the director of FEDA highlighted the importance of the support projects of this institution to cocoa producers for domestic consumption and export and especially to the environment.
These activities were attended by the Governor of Pedernales, Miriam Brea; the cocoa advisor of the Executive Power, Isidoro de la Rosa; the mayor of Paraíso, Francisco Acosta; the president of COOPASURO, Manolo Guevara; Rafael Beltre, in charge of FEDA Project Follow-up; Rafael Bueno, in charge of Agricultural Technology; Dorka Orquídea González, FEDA provincial director in Barahona; Ramón Emilio Jiménez, FEDA regional director; and Dios Virgilio Uceta, Indocafé regional director.