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    Dec. 17, 2018
 

Company and Fruit Industry News



Could Bananas go to $1 per pound?

The rising cost of oil around the world is having far reaching affects. The low prices on many of the tropical fruits we enjoy are just as much at risk of rising as everything else.

In the story excerpted below from the New York Times discusses the rising price of bananas:

 

ONCE you become accustomed to gas at $4 a gallon, brace yourself for the next shocking retail threshold: bananas reaching $1 a pound. At that price, Americans may stop thinking of bananas as a cheap staple, and then a strategy that has served the big banana companies for more than a century - enabling them to turn an exotic, tropical fruit into an everyday favorite - will begin to unravel.

The immediate reasons for the price increase are the rising cost of oil and reduced supply caused by floods in Ecuador, the world's biggest banana exporter. But something larger is going on that will affect prices for years to come.

The banana is a living organism. It can get sick, and since bananas all come from the same gene pool, a virulent enough malady could wipe out the world’s commercial banana crop in a matter of years.

Over the past decade, however, a new, more virulent strain of Panama disease has begun to spread across the world, and this time the Cavendish banana is not immune. The fungus is expected to reach Latin America in 5 to 10 years, maybe 20. The big banana companies have been slow to finance efforts to find either a cure for the fungus or a banana that resists it. Nor has enough been done to aid efforts to diversify the world’s banana crop by preserving little-known varieties of the fruit that grow in Africa and Asia.

 

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