Agtech: Innovation options for climate change adaptation in Central America and the Dominican Republic

Interdisciplinary networks, new products and technological solutions, characteristic of Agrotechs, provide new options to strengthen productivity and adaptation to climate change in the regional agricultural sector.

Context of the story

Asymmetries in technological development between South America and Central America and the Caribbean are significant. This study provides the state of the art of innovation in the region and its potential to develop technological solutions that impact productivity, income and adaptation to climate change.

The study provides the following perspectives and recommendations:
• Agrotech regional entrepreneurship processes.
• Evaluation of the innovation areas with the greatest future potential in Central America and the Caribbean.
• Contribution of Agrotech innovation for adaptation and mitigation of climate change in family farming.

What is the relevance of the Agrotech?

The implemented initiative

The agricultural sector in Latin America and the Caribbean has the potential to contribute to improving food security and reducing poverty, within a framework of environmental sustainability. To achieve this, the tools and strategies of the past are not enough! In the face of current and future challenges, it is critical to know, assess and validate the development of Agrotech ventures that promote - through interdisciplinary networks - new products and technological solutions that strengthen productivity and adaptation to climate change.

Which Agrotech have the major potential?

The technological solution

There is an increasingly wide spectrum of technological tools that are being progressively incorporated into the world of agriculture and food. Its relevance derives from its constant increase in data processing capacity, its versatility and robustness, for example:

• Remote sensors: measurements of soil and crops over time.
• Geolocation: generation of visual representations.
• Mobile technology: real-time weather and market information.
• Internet of things: sensors and instruments to link diverse sources of information.
• Artificial intelligence: predictive analysis and robotization.
• Big data: managing massive volumes of information.
• Blockchain: traceability along value chains.
• Robotics: automation of areas and processes.

It is necessary to consider that these technologies must withstand environmental conditions on farms, their use in connection with animals and be able to miniaturize when they are incorporated into the different rural facilities.

"Technological advances, cost reduction and greater adoption imply that more technologies will be added to the Agrotech regional innovation"
Agrotech Report, 2019


The incorporation and strengthening of Agrotech, particularly in regions such as Central America and the Caribbean, needs specific conditions and strategies:

• Promotion of the local innovation ecosystem by incorporating relevant actors.
• Validation and adoption of Agrotech technologies from other regions.
• Legal simplification and incentives for the creation of new ventures.
• Exploring the public role in incubation and acceleration programs.
• Bringing innovations to production areas with differentiated strategies.
• Strengthening the organization and association of small-scale producers.
• Leveraging microcredits and Fin Tech to facilitate adoption by key stakeholders.

Relevant data

Agrotech innovation

to 2.07 CO2 emission range (MT / capita)
to 2.07 CO2 emission range (MT / capita)
to 9840 Range of CO2 equivalent emissions by the agricultural sector (gigagrams)
to 9840 Range of CO2 equivalent emissions by the agricultural sector (gigagrams)
to 60.9 Population range below the poverty line in %
to 60.9 Population range below the poverty line in %

Type of innovation

Participating Organizations

Corporación Colombiana de Investigación Agropecuaria (AGROSAVIA) - Colombia
Dirección de Ciencia y Tecnología Agropecuaria (DICTA) - Honduras
Instituto Dominicano de Investigaciones Agropecuarias y Forestales  (IDIAF) - República Dominicana
 Instituto de Innovación Agropecuaria de Panamá (IDIAP) - Panamá
Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Agrícolas (INIA) - Venezuela
Instituto de Investigaciones Agropecuarias (INIA) - Chile
Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria (INIA) - España
Instituto Nacional de Innovación Agraria  (INIA) - Perú
Instituto Nacional de Investigación Agropecuaria (INIA) - Uruguay
Instituto Nacional de Innovación Agropecuaria y Forestal (INIAF) - Bolivia
Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Agropecuarias (INIAP) - Ecuador
Instituto Nacional de Tecnología Agropecuaria (INTA) - Argentina
Instituto Nacional de Innovación y Transferencia en Tecnología Agropecuaria (INTA) - Costa Rica
Instituto Nicaragüense de Tecnología Agropecuaria (INTA) - Nicaragua
Instituto Paraguayo de Tecnología Agraria (IPTA) - Paraguay
Centro Agronómico Tropical de Investigación y Enseñanza (CATIE) - Costa Rica
International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) - Colombia
CIRAD - Francia
FLAR - Colombia
Instituto Interamericano de Cooperación para la Agricultura (IICA) - Colombia

Main donors

GEF Global Environment Facility