Dominican Rep.

GIEWS Country Brief: Dominican Republic 06-May-2021

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FOOD SECURITY SNAPSHOT

  • Harvesting of 2021 main season paddy crop ongoing

  • Production of paddy crops in 2020 estimated close to average

  • Cereal imports in 2020/21 marketing year anticipated at high levels

  • Prices of staple food higher year on year

Harvesting of 2021 main season paddy crop ongoing

Harvesting of the 2021 main season paddy crop, which accounts for about half of the annual production, is ongoing. Production of the main season is forecast at an above‑average level due to large plantings, instigated by the year‑on‑year high price levels. According to satellite‑based imagery, vegetation conditions were favourable across most crop lands, as of mid‑April 2021 (see NDVI Anomaly map). The weather forecast points to a high likelihood of average precipitation amounts in the key producing northern region in the May‑July period, providing conducive conditions for planting of the second season paddy crop.

Production of paddy crops in 2020 estimated close to average

Paddy output has been increasing since 2015, reflecting large plantings and high yields. However, the 2020 production declined compared to the previous year as some areas were affected by soil moisture deficits during the June‑August period. The 2020 paddy production is estimated at an average level of 1 million tonnes.

Cereal import requirements in 2020/21 marketing year anticipated at high levels

Cereal import requirements in the 2020/21 marketing year (July/June) are anticipated at an above‑average level of 2.2 million tonnes. Cereal imports have been on a steady rise during the past ten years, mainly reflecting the increasing demand for yellow maize by the feed industry. The poultry sector, the major destination of imported maize, continues to grow in order to meet the sustained domestic demand.

Prices of staple food higher year on year

Retail prices of black and red beans declined in the first quarter of 2021 due to improved market availabilities by the ongoing main harvests. However, prices of both types of beans were higher year on year due to reduced outputs in 2020 following dry weather conditions. By contrast, prices of rice strengthened seasonally in the first three months of 2021 and were about 7 percent above the level of a year earlier, mainly reflecting the year‑on‑year low production obtained in 2020. Prices of maize, mostly imported, were also higher than in March 2020, reflecting elevated international prices of the grain.

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