We Are Going Bananas - Support Us!
We Are Going Bananas – Support Us!
- Some scientists believe bananas were the earth’s first fruit and that they date back from as early as 8000BC.
- There are in excess of 500 banana varieties in the world.
- Bananas are harvested green because they continue to ripen even after being picked.
- Bananas are rich in antioxidants, B Vitamins, fibre and potassium.
- A medium sized banana will give you approximately 10% of your daily fibre requirements.
- Bananas can help reduce the risk of certain cancers and improve your blood pressure, therefore reducing health risks such as strokes.
- The Australian Government places strict import rules on the banana industry. This not only helps to keep disease and pests out of our farms, but also helps to support the local growers within Australia and keeps the banana farming economy strong.
- Bananas are predominantly consumed as fresh product. Cavendish bananas account for approximately 95% of the Australian market, the remaining 5% is represented by Lady Finger bananas and other varieties, such as Gold Finger, Ducasse, and Red Dacca.
- 70% of all Australian bananas are sold through the two major National supermarket chains.
- In 2006 the North Queensland banana industry was devastated by Cyclone Larry and banana production fell to less than a third of its annual average production figures.
- World banana production in 2008 was approximately 90,705,922 tonnes, of which Australia's share represented about 0.235%. India was the world's largest producer, with 23.2 million tonnes of bananas produced.
- In 2009 Australia's 800 banana growers are estimated to have produced over 20.7 million 13-kilogram cartons of bananas.
Recent Banana News
“Cyclone Yasi Devastates Banana Growers in Far North Queensland”
Whilst the banana industry managed to appear relatively unscathed from the Queensland floods, Cyclone Yasi was a different story. Growers in Tully and Innisfail were the worst affected by the tropical cyclone, and according to the Australian Banana Growers Council, these areas lost around 95% of their banana crops. This type of loss to the industry is beyond comprehension and there is expected to be interruption to supply of bananas for at least the next four months. Some fruit will be weather damaged, however the industry has assured consumers that there is still some good quality fruit out there and hopes that people understand that this has been caused by something completely out of the industry’s control.
It is important that banana farmers are able to clear the mess and devastation caused by cyclone Yasi as soon as possible in order for crops to be replanted, building restored and fresh quality bananas be available in abundance for consumers.
The Australian Government has confirmed that they will be offering financial support for North Queensland banana growers and further details of this assistance package can be found on the ABGC website.
It is important that as consumers we are patient with the banana industry, continue to buy and support local growers, in order to help the economy and get our thriving banana industry back to its full potential.