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Developments in global banana trade – results for 2020

Higher shipments from Latin America and Caribbean offset by lower exports from Asia and Africa

The Banana Market Review is issued on an annual basis to Members & Observers of the Sub-Group on Bananas of the Intergovernmental Group on Bananas and Tropical Fruits, which is a subsidiary body of the Committee on Commodity Problems (CCP).

This report describes full year results on developments in global banana trade in 2020 and represents an update to the Banana Market Preliminary Results 2020. The data on trade quantities presented in this report were compiled from the following sources: country responses to the 2021 questionnaire of the FAO Intergovernmental Sub Group on Bananas; data from the UN Comtrade database; and secondary data and information from desk research. The findings incorporate revised data and information as available up to the end of June 2021. FAO is continuously monitoring global trade flows of bananas and will update these results should revisions of officially reported data be released.

Available data indicate that global exports of bananas, excluding plantain, remained relatively stable at around 21.5 million tons in 2020, as higher shipments from Latin America and the Caribbean were offset by lower exports from Asia and Africa. This stability of world exports stood in stark contrast with the fast expansion of global banana trade seen between 2017 and 2019.

According to various sources in the industry and specialized media, developments in global banana trade in 2020 were to a large extent conditioned by the manifold and far reaching ramifications of the COVID‐19 pandemic throughout most of the year, which particularly hampered exports from Asia and Africa. However, amid the many factors at play in 2020, including the impact of natural disasters and the spread of plant diseases, and due to the lack of counterfactual, it is difficult to draw clear conclusions on the precise impact of COVID‐19 on global banana trade.

Click here to read the full report.

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