Bananas are one of the most important products in Honduras. Their production creates many jobs and they are an essential source of foreign exchange. From January to November 2020, the country's agricultural product exports totaled 793.6 million dollars, i.e. 9.8% more than in the same period of 2019. This growth was driven by banana sales, which increased by 71, 5 million dollars thanks to the 23.6% improvement in the average international price.
The fall in banana exports due to the damages caused by tropical storms Eta and Iota will have a significant impact on the country's income, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (SAG).
The banana plantations won't recover in the short term, stated the head of the SAG, Mauricio Guevara. "Exports are definitely going to decline. The banana's cycle is longer than a vegetable's cycle, being able to harvest them takes 9 to 12 months. The producers have also expressed their concern, indicating that it will take them approximately a year to recover their plantations, as they need to re-plant the farms.
Most of the bananas produced in the Honduran departments of Yoro, Colon, and Cortes are destined for export. The United States is the main market for this fruit, accounting for 98.8% of all exports in the first 11 months of 2020.