Musatec, which was established in the Santa Elena Peninsula in October 2019, has already made the first export of the MP1 banana variety to the east coast of the United States, where they will be sold by Walmart Florida.
This variety has a larger bunch, which has more fruit than the Barraganete banana, and it ripens faster. Angelo Caputi Icaza, the manager of Musatec, said that they had broken paradigms, as the banana that they have exported to the United States is still green when it reaches that destination. The company has already exported nearly 90 pallets and they aim to increase shipments in the coming weeks.
Musatec owns 300 hectares in the Peninsula, of which 90 are planted. A disadvantage of the peninsular land is that it does not have many nutrients as in other areas, Caputi Icaza stated. However, the area isn't very rainy, which can be a favorable factor to avoid the presence of fungi, he added. "We have been in the Peninsula for more than a year and we have not made applications against Sigatoka so far," the agricultural businessman stated.
The banana varieties grown in Ecuador are the Barraganete, Harton, Curare dwarf, Dominico, Maqueño, MP1, and the Hawaiian banana. These differ by size. Barraganete is the most popular variety in the industrial and export market, according to data from the Banana Exporters Association.
Musatec plans to venture into organic bananas, a prevalent crop in the Peninsula. According to the Ministry of Agriculture, there are more than 1,900 hectares of bananas in the province of Santa Elena, most of which are used to grow organic bananas.