Banana, plantain production shoots up
The banana and plantain industry enjoyed a very productive 2022, recording a 2.8 per cent increase in banana production and 18.7 per cent for plantain.
General Manager of the Banana Board, Janet Conie, said that last year's production of plantain was the highest in many years.
"It all had to do with the resilience of the farmers, aided and supported by the Banana Board. I want to congratulate the farmers for their resilience and for their productivity, in spite of the constraints," she said.
"We also have some very hard-working extension and research officers, as well as quality control and certification officers. They are all working together with the farmers to ensure that they make their businesses very profitable, and the banana and plantain business is profitable," Conie added.
In excess of 72,000 metric tonnes of bananas and more than 60,000 metric tonnes of plantains in 2022. The Board had set a target of 70,000 metric tonnes of bananas and 47,300 metric tonnes of plantains being produced by 2023.
A total of 898.21 tonnes of bananas were exported in 2022, which represented a 9.17 per cent increase over 2021.
Conie said the Board is focused on strengthening the industry to be able to provide for the underserved markets in the Caribbean.
"There are a lot of markets in the Caribbean that are not being supplied We are still not producing enough that we can export to all of them. We have targets to meet ... but we are doing very well," she said.