The Commonwealth of Dominica is the most northerly and largest of the Windward Islands, and is known as the nature island of the Caribbean. It covers an area of 751 km² (290 mi²), is heavily forested and is renowned for its lakes, waterfalls and over 365 rivers. The agricultural sector includes production of bananas, citrus, coconuts, cocoa, herbal oils and extracts. Historically, banana production has employed over one-third of the labour force – directly or indirectly however, the sector has been facing challenges with the loss of the preferential European Union markets for bananas. There has been diversification into other crops such as citrus fruits, vegetables and coffee.
Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI) Strategic Plan 2018-2022
Dominica, similar to the other OECS countries, are highly vulnerable to high impact weather phenomena such as hurricanes as well as the vagaries of climate change and this has resulted in devastating situations which have impacted not only the agricultural sector but that of overall national development for the country. Given this context, Dominica has been strategically positioned to be the first Climate Resilient Country in the Region and the world. From an agricultural standpoint, this would be realized building resilience into agricultural production. Root and Tuber crops and their production systems have been identified as a climate and disaster risk resilience strategy based on past experience where ground provisions have proven to be hardy commodities. Alternative crop production systems will be researched and validated especially in the context of sustainability and competitive climate resilient value chains. To this end, alternative protected agricultural system will be validated and also complimented with hydroponic/aquaponic production systems which, renowned for their water and land use efficiency, align with Dominica thrust as the nature isle of the Caribbean. Industry development, trade and competitiveness remain high on Dominica’s agenda and the coconut value chain has been identified for rehabilitation and development. CARDI will engage in work along the value chain with a focus on seed and/or tissue culture material of the relevant varieties for copra production and to support the oleochemical industry. The essential oils industry is also regarded as of key importance and CARDI will undertake value chain analysis, market studies and investment profiles to underpin development and the thrust for the export market. Though diversification is now the hallmark of agricultural development, bananas and plantain remain key commodities and CARDI’s work will be in the area of Integrated Pest Management with respect to Black and Yellow Sigatoka Disease Management and identifying resilient and marketable varieties of banana and plantain.
Download CARDI STRATEGIC PLAN 2018-2022
CARDI Representative / Agribusiness Specialist
P.O. Box 346
Forestry Division Building
Commonwealth of Dominica
Phone: (767) 448-2715