Paraguay's banana sector used to generate more than 19 million dollars in income a year for the country, nearly 15 million of which were destined directly to the district of Tembiapora. In fact, this continues to be this town's main source of income.
This year, however, the sector is expected to have an income of almost 10 million dollars, an almost 50% decrease, due to the fall of the Argentine peso and the difficult economic situation that the neighboring country is going through. Tembiapora will receive some 8 million and producers would only receive enough money to cover the cost of production, stated the mayor of Tembiapora and banana producer, Hugo Franco.
The average price of the box of first-quality bananas that were exported to Argentina has gone from 25,000 G to a maximum of 20,000 G per box, he added.
He also said that the intermediate quality products that are distributed in the country's school snacks were being paid at a very low price. According to Franco, a system of intermediaries was created that buy the product from them and then resell it at higher costs to the winning companies. As a result, producers are being paid less than G 10,000 per box of bananas in the country, an amount that barely covers the cost of production.