PHILIPPINES: PBGEA warns of tough times ahead

by Carl Collen, Fruitnet   The Philippines Banana Growers and Exporters Association (PBGEA) has said that the country’s banana industry could be facing a number of tough obstacles as it looks to recover from a disappointing 2015.   The organisation said that the industry was facing threats from El Nino, Panama disease and attacks from insurgents, Manila […]

ARGENTINA: Imported bananas dominate the market

  The banana is the most consumed fruit in Argentina. Per capita consumption averages more than 12 kilograms per year. Argentina produces bananas in a tropical zone in the north of the country, but the local production only serves to supply a fraction of the market. Instead, imported bananas dominate the market: the country imported […]

US: “Bright spot” for Florida citrus growers

by Carl Collen, Fruitnet   This season’s Florida orange crop has increased by 3 per cent to 71m boxes, according to projections made by the National Agricultural Statistics Service of the US Department of Agriculture.   The 2m box increase in oranges is a result of a higher estimate for this season’s Valencia harvest, the result […]

SOUTH AFRICA: Good start on EU market expected for citrus

by ichola Watson, Fresh Plaza   The citrus harvest is under way in some areas of South Africa. In the north around the Hoedspruit area, volumes of grapefruit will be down by as much as 2 million boxes due to hail last year and the prolonged drought.   Other citrus fruit has faired better though, the […]

SPOTLIGHT: These vitamin-fortified bananas might get you thinking differently about GMOs

by Nathaneal Johnson, Grist     In the winter of 2014, students at Iowa State University received emails asking them to volunteer for an experiment. Researchers were looking for women who would eat bananas that had been genetically engineered to produce extra carotenes, the yellow-orange nutrients that take their name from carrots. Our bodies use […]

CHINA: Customs destroys 34 tonnes of bananas imported from the Philippines

Shenzhen customs in China had destroyed imported bananas from the Philippines according to CCTV News. Customs officials in Shenzhen city, Guangdong Province, destroyed a batch of unqualified bananas imported from the Philippines on Friday, Xinhua News Agency reported.   The bananas that weighed 34.78 tons and worth 33,000 US dollars didn’t meet the food safety […]

AUSTRALIA: ‘No silver bullet’ but researchers hopeful of banana farming future in spite of Panama Tropical Race 4

by Charlie McKillop, ABC Rural   March 3, 2015 was the day banana growers in far north Queensland hoped would never come.   Biosecurity authorities revealed the deadly soil disease, Panama Tropical Race 4, or TR4, had been found in the Tully Valley.   Growers were warned the world as they knew it would never be […]

AUSTRALIA: Biosecurity authorities still on high alert for devastating banana disease, 12 months after detection in Queensland

by Craig Zonca, ABC Rural     Queensland biosecurity authorities remain on high alert for the devastating banana disease Panama Tropical Race 4 (TR4), 12 months after it was first detected in the state’s north.   “It’s been a massive year,” said Queensland’s chief biosecurity officer Jim Thompson.   “One of the biggest ever plant pest responses […]

PERU: Mandarin exports accounts for 88% of citrus shipments

  The Citrus Growers Association of Peru (Procitrus) stated that Peruvian mandarin exports in 2015 amounted to 100,800 metric tons, which account for 88 percent of the country’s total citrus shipments.   “The satsuma, clementine, Murcott, and Minneola tangelo mandarins have become the stars of Peruvian citrus exports,” they said.   Total citrus exports amounted […]

AUSTRALIA: Are small trees the future for mango, macadamia and avocado industries?

by Kallee Buchanan and Trudie Leigo, ABC Rural   In Queensland, researchers are dwarfing mangos, macadamias and avocados in an attempt to increase productivity of these tree crops.   The Department of Agriculture and Fisheries is three years into a 20-year trial and has begun sharing its experience to date with growers.   John Wilkie, the […]