Global banana production in jeopardy as malignant disease develops resistance against pesticides

GLOBAL – The global banana production is under threat from Black Sigatoka fungus, a banana crop disease that is caused by the leaf fungus Pseudocercospora fijiensis. According to a recent study by Dutch researchers from Wageningen University & Research (WUR), the fungus is rapidly developing resistance to pesticides. To make matters worse, researchers have identified the fungus from seven banana-producing countries in Latin America, the Caribbean, Asia, and Africa, making it a global problem Cavendish bananas that account for more than 50 percent of world production – and dominate exports…

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Rwanda launches new banana alcoholic beverages produced in recently opened US$1.2m factory

RWANDA – Rwanda has commenced operations at its Rwf1.2 billion (US$1.2m), Rwamagana Banana Community Processing Centre, producing banana alcoholic beverages. The factory which set turbines of its machines rolling in the beginning of April, has a production capacity of 28,000 litres per day i.e., 3,500 crates. According to reports by The New Times Rwanda, construction works for the facility started in 2016, but stalled for years. The center was fully constructed and equipped in January 2019 with production starting in 2020. However, they were again met with slight set-back of…

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Mozambique’s Bananalândia Group eyes bigger banana export market, opening US$20m processing unit

MOZAMBIQUE – Bananalândia Group, a major producer and exporter of bananas in Mozambique has inaugurated its new US$20 million production and processing unit in Maputo province, South of the country. The new unit according to Club of Mozambique, uses modern equipment to plant banana palms and occupies an area of 900 hectares. It currently employs 1,000 workers, with an annual production capacity of 3.5 million boxes for export, reinforcing Mozambique’s lead position in the regional banana market. Over the last decade, much has been done to make the country a…

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Banana exports from Cameroon rise by 13.2% YoY attributed to bullish performance by all main exporters

CAMEROON – Cameroon exported 17,258 tons of bananas in February 2021, a 13.28% year-on-year rise from the 14,965 tons exported in February 2020. According to data compiled by the Banana Association of Cameroon (Assobacam), the increase in exports was spurred by the commendable performance by all the three main market players. Plantations du Haut Penja (PHP), a local subsidiary of the French group Compagnie fruitière de Marseille exported 14,233 tons of bananas, a rise from 13,847 tons registered the previous year, representing a 2.71% jump. Over the same period, state-owned…

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Banana exports from Cameroon declined by 8% in 2020 despite resumption of operations by CDC

CAMEROON – Banana exports from Cameroon in 2020 amounted to 187,884 tons, an 8% decline from the previous year’s 204,320 tons. According to the Banana Association of Cameroon (Assobacam), the 17,436 tons dip will result in revenue decline from 2019’s XAF 136 billion (US$250m). The country’s leading exporter Plantations du Haut Penja (PHP), subsidiary of Compagnie fruitière de Marseille, saw its exports decline by 20, 6613 tons from 187, 423 tons attained the previous year to 166, 726 tons in 2020. The same down trend performance was reflected by Boh…

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Cameroon records 19k tons decline in banana exports in first nine months

CAMEROON – Cameroon, one of the largest banana exporters in Africa, has reported a 19, 387 tons decline in exported amounts of the commodity, in the first nine months of 2020. According to the Banana Association of Cameroon (Assobacam), during the period under-review, the country exported a total of 136,048 tons of bananas, a drop from 155,435 tons attained last year. The decline is attributed to unfavourable weather conditions which prolonged the dry season leading to low yields. Among the three main exporters, Plantations du Haut Penja (PHP), subsidiary of…

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Cameroon boosts banana production with US$23.9m financing

CAMEROON – The government of Cameroon plans to boost banana production in the country by relaunching the operations of agro-industrial unit Cameroon Development Corporation (CDC) with CFAF29bn (US$49.5m) financing. From the CFAF 29 billion (US$49.5m) financing, the Corporation will utilize the bigger share CFAF14 billion (US$23.9m) in the banana sector and CFAF7 billion (US$11.9m) for the rubber, CFAF7 billion (US$11.9m) for oil palm and CFAF1 billion (US$1.7m) to finance salary arrears. With the financing the Ministry of Economy said that it is confident the country’s banana production will resume its upward…

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EU extends the Banana Accompanying Measures programme in Cameroon

CAMEROON – The European Union has extended the Banana Accompanying Measures (BAM) programme being implemented in Cameroon by 2 years, to support the banana sector weakened by the covid-19 health crisis and the security crisis experienced in the country. The program was launched in 2013 with an estimated budget of XAF31.6 billion (US$51.9 million). “The companies concerned have two more years to complete the actions undertaken to improve the productivity of their plantations and enhance the competitiveness of the sector,” the EU explains. According to Business in Cameroon, the BAM…

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Somalia’s revives banana industry with first export shipment to Saudi Arabia

SOMALIA – Somalia has resumed banana exports after decades of interrupted production of the crop. The first shipment of the fruits produced by Somali farmers was seen off at the Mogadishu port by Minister for Agriculture and Irrigation, Said Hussein Eid on Wednesday, 25th November 2019 heading to Saudi Arabia. The shipment consisted of two containers which will be followed by large scale export to other regional countries in forthcoming weeks. Confirmed is export to Turkey. Mr. Said urged Somali farmers to increase production as the government is working towards…

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Belgian government injects US$1.29m in Tanzania’s banana research facility

TANZANIA – Tanzania’s Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology has received US$1.29 million from the Belgian government to aid the construction of a state of art banana research centre, reports IPP Media. The research centre is aimed at providing technical expertise and information on modern farming practices as it seeks to boost production in the country. Speaking at the institute, the Vice Chancellor Professor Emanuel Luoga said the centre will go a long way into helping farmers to increase their banana harvests hence improve their economic wellbeing. “Through…

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