Bananas at a crossroads


Over the past year, my colleagues and I have met with banana producers, importers, retailers, and researchers around the world. A picture is emerging of an industry facing multiple pressures, with important choices to be made to ensure environmental, social, and economic sustainability.

By Dan Bebber

Bananas, the UK’s favourite fruit, appear at first glance to be among our most reliable and resilient fresh produce – they are stocked in every supermarket on every day of the year and their price seldom varies by more than a few pence per kilo. But beneath this apparently smooth and steady supply lies a complex international supply network affected by extreme weather, plant disease, social and political shifts, and the looming threat of climate change. The reliability of banana availability to UK consumers, despite these diverse threats and the fact that only one variety of banana is internationally traded, makes the banana supply…

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