Related Topics: Agriculture, Climate Change
A study published in Nature Climate Change suggests that with continued warming, the banana yield gains could slow down or even reverse in some countries leading to a drop in yields by 2050.
Key Highlights of the Study
- The study shows that 27 countries — accounting for 86 per cent of the world’s dessert banana production — have on average seen increased crop yield since 1961 due to the changing climate resulting in more favourable growing conditions.
- These gains could be significantly reduced, or disappear completely, by 2050 if climate change continues at its expected rate.
- 10 countries — including the world’s largest producer and consumer of banana, India and the fourth largest producer, Brazil — are predicted to see a significant decline in crop yields.
- At the same time, certain other countries — Ecuador and Honduras, and many in Africa — will witness an overall increase in crop yields.
- India could experience a major reversal with predicted negative effects of future climate change compared to positive effects in the past.
- But the decline in production due to climate change in the case of India may be mitigated by strong, technology-driven measures to increase the yield.
- Bananas are recognised as the most important fruit crop — providing food, nutrition and income for millions in both rural and urban areas across the globe.
- It is grown throughout the tropics and subtropics.
- Such international trade can play a pivotal role to local and national economies in producing countries.
- Given this importance, predicting the potential impacts of climate change on banana production systems is crucial to ensuring its long-term survival.
- According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), India is the world’s number one producer of banana with 29 million tonnes produced per year between 2010 and 2017.
- Over 29% of the world’s banana production is in India.
- The average yield of banana in India is around 60 tonnes per hectare, according to the FAO.
- During the same period (2010 and 2017), China, which is second largest producer globally, produced about one-third of India — 11 million tonnes per year.