Peru and Ecuador have become global players in the export of bananas and plantains. They share the same possibilities, challenges, and their fruit has great prestige in key markets, such as North America and Europe.
Good agricultural practices from sowing to harvest are decisive for obtaining a quality product that meets the demands of international markets, stated agronomist and plant pathologist Carlos Orellana, a consultant for Bananotecnia. "Quality bananas are made in the field," he emphasized. What are the main mistakes that could impact the final quality of the fruit?
One of the biggest mistakes many farmers make, Orellana said, is that they believe it's better to get as many 'offspring' as they can from each production unit. That's is not the case. This technique must be put into practice to obtain an adequate population for each production unit, so that the remaining “offspring” receives the care it requires and develops an adequate quality standard.
In this regard, he said, it's important to have the necessary certifications that the markets expect and require, such as Global Gap, Organic, Fairtrade, and Rainforest certifications.
Peru's banana segment, especially the organic sector, is growing. The country has 10,000 certified hectares to grow organic bananas that can help Peru differentiate itself from its direct competitors, such as Ecuador, which is affected by the black Sigatoka, a disease that hasn't reached the producing areas of Piura thanks to the environmental conditions of this Peruvian region.
Finally, Orellana said that the sector had to keep an eye out and track the advance of the Fusarium oxysporum fungus, which was detected in Colombia in very limited areas, as it could seriously affect the country's banana industry if it reached Peru.
Online course: "In the field banana for export preventive quality auditor"
Carlos Orellana will hold the online course "In the field banana for export preventive quality auditor" organized by Bananotecnia from November 17 to December 30.