Local September 10, 2021 | 3:01 pm

The country imported US $ 2.3 billion in agricultural products from January to July

Santo Domingo, DR.

 

Between January and July of 2021, more than 2.4 million tons of agricultural goods were imported for an amount exceeding US$2.3 billion, according to statistics available from the Ministry of Agriculture.

Imported items include live animals; meat and edible offal; fish and crustaceans, mollusks, and other aquatic invertebrates; milk and dairy products; poultry eggs; natural honey; animal foods; and cereals.

Also brought from abroad have been floriculture goods; vegetables, roots, and tubers; fruits; citrus peels (citrus fruits, melons, or watermelons); coffee, tea, yerba mate and spices; milling products; malt; starch; inulin; wheat gluten; seeds; plants; straw and fodder.

Imports also included gums, resins, and other vegetable juices and extracts; animal or vegetable fats and oils; processed edible fats; animal or vegetable wax; sugars and confectionery; cocoa and cocoa preparations; cereal, flour, starch, starch or milk preparations; bakery products; vegetable preparations; tobacco and processed tobacco substitutes; among others.

Increase
The figures show that both volume and value, with slight variations, have continued to increase over the course of the year. While in January 310,640 tons of goods were imported for an amount of US$269,670,001, in July, the amount rose to 412,242 and US$349,987,950, respectively.

At the beginning of August, the Government authorized the importation of chickens to meet the increase in demand due to the decrease in pork consumption caused by African swine fever (ASF) in the country.

Although data was requested from the Ministry of Agriculture for that month to see how much imports increased, it was not possible to obtain the information.

The numbers could continue to increase because this month, the Government will allow the free importation of chickens to maintain stable prices, according to the Minister of Agriculture, Limber Cruz, this week.

The most imported products
Among the products most imported in July were cereals, seeds, and various fruits; industrial or medicinal plants; straw and fodder; animal or vegetable fats and oils; processed food fats; animal or vegetable wax; beverages, alcoholic liquids, and vinegar; residues and waste from the food industry; prepared food for animals; and others.

Local production
The Sectoral Panorama July 2021, recently published by the Ministry of Economy, Planning, and Development (MEPyD), revealed that in that month, the production volume of agricultural goods registered a year-on-year increase in general terms of 1.5%, where the increase in the production of milkweed (5.9%), pineapple (4.5%), watermelon (6.3%), coconut (3.2%) and rice (4.3%) stand out.

However, the report records that livestock production decreased 3.1%, compared to the same month of the previous year, mainly due to the reduction of cattle production, which fell 13.1%; milk, which decreased 8.7%; and pork, which experienced a decrease of 2.6%.

Likewise, in the indicated month, the production of legumes fell 14.7%, peanuts by 3.5%, vegetables by 3.2%, other cereals by 2.8%, other tubers by 1.1%, and other fruits by 0.6%.

On the other hand, chicken production increased 9.4% and egg production 5.5%. There were also increases in pumpkin, sour lemons, potatoes, vegetables, among other crops.

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