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HOW CLIMATE CHANGE WILL AFFECT BANANA PRODUCTION?

Written by Talent KAS

Related Topics: Agriculture, Climate Change

News

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.

Significance

  • 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.

Banana Production

  • 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.
[Source: The Hindu, Indian Express]

 

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