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Banana Tech

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Touch the Soil News #568 Global banana production is over 300 billion pounds a year – that’s 40 lbs. of bananas for every person in the world. It can take 3-4 years to grow a banana tree from seed and up to two (2) years when planting a banana sapling. In addition, bananas need tropical weather to produce. Given the time frames, and geographical constraints, it takes lots of logistics to get enough bananas to meet the global appetite. However, some amazing banana technology is being developed. One in particular is very promising if not downright odd. Banana researchers in Japan have discovered that if you take a banana sapling…

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Bananageddon – A Frightening Lack of Genetic Diversity

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Touch the Soil News #510 For North Americans, bananas are primarily and imported food. Through market, production and uniformity considerations, the bananas North Americans enjoy is down to one variety – the Cavendish. Back in the 50’s there was another variety called the Gros Michel banana. This banana was almost wiped out due to the “Panama” disease. The Cavendish banana was resistant to the “Panama” disease when production (particularly production intended for export) migrated to the Cavendish variety. Today, the Cavendish banana is in danger of disappearing due to pressure of rising costs and disease made worse by a lack of genetic diversity in the realm of bananas. A new…

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