The Japanese prefecture of Fukushima, which before the 2011 earthquake was known for its prosperous agriculture, resumed its agricultural activities ten years after the nuclear accident that affected them; a period of time that was necessary to guarantee that people could safely eat the fruits and vegetables grown in the region. One of the products that is gaining strength due to the innovation of its proposal is the edible-peel bananas, baptized as Kirei, which in Japanese means beautiful.
The farmers of this fruit have just obtained a high-quality harvest that they expect will help them revive the city's agricultural businesses after the forced lethargy in which the accident plunged them. These bananas won't be cheap, as they will cost nearly 300 yen (almost 3 dollars) per unit. However, there is something that distinguishes them from other competitors: their edible skin.
Japan intends to start supplying itself with bananas, as it currently has to import them, mainly from the Philippines. This fruit became very popular in the country after World War II; not surprisingly, Japan imported 605,492 tons of bananas worth 277 million dollars in 2015.
Bananas produced in the cold
Kirei bananas are not the only bananas with an edible peel in Japan. Japan also produces a banana variety that is initially grown at 60 degrees below zero and later replanted in warmer climates, of nearly 30 degrees, where they thaw.
This banana variety is known as the Mongee Banana and was developed by the scientists of the D&T company, who have decided to imitate the cold climate on Earth 20,000 years ago when the first plants began to sprout after the winter thaw. The result is a banana that has a very thin edible peel. Most banana plants need two years to reach full maturity, while the Mongee variety only needs four months. According to the D&T Farm website, the Mongee banana peel may contain tryptophan, which some studies relate to the creation of serotonin, vitamin B6, and magnesium.