In recent days, the price of Ecuadorian bananas has registered a rapid increase due to the decline in Honduran production generated by storm Eta, which ravaged some 10,000 hectares of crops in the country. On Tuesday, the price of a box of Ecuadorian bananas stood at $ 7.30 (although there are reports that exporters offered up to $ 8). A day later that value had risen to $ 7.50 in some areas of the province of Los Rios, Guayas, and El Oro.
"This will help us to recover what we lost from week 10 to week 43," said Victor Haon, a producer from the area of Valencia.
According to exporters, the price is expected to remain high for four to six months, the time necessary for the affected plantations to recover. This, however, will depend on the total impact that the storm had on other Central American banana supplying countries, including Nicaragua and Guatemala, and the impact that COVID-19 may have on world consumption, especially in the United States, the European Union, and Asia.
The additional benefit obtained from this temporary situation will serve to pay the debts acquired and to improve the infrastructure of the plantations, which will help increase the average yields per hectare, Haon stated.
Productivity is key to greater profitability in the sector, Haon stressed. In the last twelve months, the new production systems have improved the production yield in the same acreage. The use of products derived from vermiculture and soil improvement, combined with traditional fieldwork and conventional fertilization plans, plus the organic control of Sigatoka, has had good results for the banana sector in this area.