28 March 2017. Gent, Belgium. International Plant Biotechnology Outreach (IPBO). There are few people in the world who are not familiar with bananas. With an annual production of 145 million metric tons in over 130 countries and an economic value of 44.1 billion dollars, bananas are the fourth most important food crop in the world. Given that bananas serve as a basic food source for 20 million people in East Africa and for 70 million people in West and Central Africa, Africa is highly dependent on banana cultivation for food, income, and job security. 

To continue to guarantee food security in Africa, Asia and Latin America, as well as the worldwide export of bananas in the future, there is an urgent need for improved banana varieties with an increased yield and nutritional value, which are resistant to all pests and diseases.

A number of Facts Series elaborate on processes to produce new and improved banana varieties that contribute to sustainable, environmentally friendly, and economically viable agriculture.

This post was originally published at PAEPARD and has been republished with permission.

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