The Dominican Republic has opted for the cultivation of avocados in the last few years. In 2011 the estimated surface devoted to growing avocados stood at around 22,134 hectares, now the latest figures show that there are 35,841 hectares devoted to all avocado varieties in the country with 13,000 to 13,500 producers. Eight years ago, avocado exports amounted to 11.4 million dollars, while in the first four months of 2018 they reached 30 million dollars, an increase of more than 150%.
The president of the Avocado Cluster, Jose Rosa, said that starting July, the varieties that are not commercialized in the US market because that's the moment that the North American avocado harvest takes place, enter the market. These varieties for local consumption are the Pollock, Popenoe, and doctor Dupuis varieties, as well as some varieties that have become popular in the area of Cibao, such as the Pelon variety.
The main variety being grown is the Semil 34. It is followed by Carla and the Hass avocados. The Beneke variety, which has become popular in recent years and has been growing, ranks fourth.
"The province of San Cristobal is the leading avocado producer, along with the part of Valdesia, which belongs to Peravia, concentrating 30 to 35% of the national avocado production, especially of the Semil 34 variety," stated the president of the Cluster.
Currently, the Avocado Cluster is managing several avocado oil production projects, as well as some processing projects to make deep-frozen avocado products in order to reach new markets and consumers. Furthermore, different byproducts can be extracted from avocado seeds that can be used in the preparation of paints and cosmetics.