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St Lucia growers react to suspension of banana exports to the UK

The announcement by Minister of Agriculture, Alfred Prospere a few weeks ago, that the UK had suspended the importation of bananas from St Lucia, has further convinced growers that were right to plant cash crops to compliment the banana crop.

"The suspension of the exportation of our bananas to the UK has affected me because I was selling approximately 125 boxes of bananas to the UK, weekly. It's a big loss to me, however, I will continue planting bananas until the industry collapses completely," said one farmer, adding that she will not depend solely on bananas to earn a living reports

According to the grower, since 2007, she has been selling bananas to National Fair Trade Organization (NFTO) and in 2021, to a local exporter of bananas to the regional market, she was making more money from her bananas when they were sold to the UK market than she is making from selling other agricultural produce, but is satisfied with what she is making from other crops.

She lamented that both administrations kept blaming each other for the state of the banana industry.

According to her, the biggest problem banana farmers are experiencing is the high cost of inputs, which has made banana farming unprofitable for many farmers.

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