Global Partnership Initiative for Plant Breeding Capacity Building (test)

Plant breeding programs in Antigua and Barbuda

Geographical situation of Antigua and BarbudaAntigua and Barbuda comprises the islands of Antigua, Barbuda and Redonda. Their economy is service-based, with tourism, financial, and government services representing the key sources of employment and income. Agriculture contributed only 3.31% of Gross Value Added in 2006 (ECLAC). The main agricultural products are cotton, fruits, vegetables, bananas, coconuts, mangoes, and sugarcane.

The size of the country and the budget is reflected in the low number of plant breeding organizations, namely three. The two main institutions (MOA and ADC) are public sector agencies. The third one is CARDI, a regional institute charged with providing for the research and development needs of agriculture.

The main breeding programmes focus on cotton, pineapple and sweet potato and consist mainly of line development and enhancement.

Inadequate numbers of breeders and inadequate availability of laboratory infrastructure to carry out experiments using advanced plant breeding techniques are known to be the most limiting factors of Caribbean plant breeding programmes. The Antigua and Barbuda national capacity firstly needs to be consolidated to enhance efficiencies and share knowledge and experiences.

Research and education institutes
with activities in plant breeding



Ministry of Agriculture (MoA)
Website available in English

MOA is a public sector/government run research institution that has been involved in research activities since September of 1945. The research activities are focused primarily on germplasm enhancement and line evaluation of cotton and pineapple varieties. The MOA depends on CARDI to take leadership in their research programme. No biotechnology research has been undertaken.


Caribbean Agriculture and Research and Development Institute (CARDI)
Website available in English

The plant breeding work is concentrated on sweet potatoes to characterize and select varieties for their productivity. The second area of thrust is in commercial hot peppers seed production. No variety has been released to date.

Agriculture Development Corporation (ADC)
No Website available

ADC is a Statutory Corporation established in May of 2005 with the objective of improving production and productivity of root crops and tubers. The agency to date works only on germplasm enhancement and line evaluation of sweet potatoes varieties. The ADC functions independently from the Ministry of Agriculture and its main work is in the areas of evaluating fixed lines developed by the breeding programme of ADC and evaluating fixed lines introduced from other breeding programmes.


Information by Azim Hosein (2009) - Information based on the Antigua and Barbida's full report from the PBBC survey.
Last revised 17-07-2009, GIPB.