Pakistan develops ‘two unique varieties’ of banana. Here’s everything you need to know

These high-yielding variations will have more shelf life, an essential requirement for export.

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  • Pakistan has developed two new variations of Bananas in Sindh.
  • The new variations were developed by the NIGAB of the NARC.
  • The new variations have the potential to increase Pakistan’s banana exports.

(Nicolas Ayer / EyeEm)

Pakistan has made innovation in banana production, as the country’s apex agricultural research institution has invented two variations of the fruit for cultivation in Sindh.

“The latest varieties — NIGAB-1 and NIGAB-2 — will increase banana production in the country, which will further help in meeting domestic needs as well as export targets,” said Agricultural Research Council (PARC) Chairman, Dr. Muhammad Azeem Khan. He praised the scientists involved in the development of NIGAB varieties.

(The Express Tribune)

According to details, the new varieties of bananas were developed at the National Institute for Genomic & Advanced Biotechnology of the National Agricultural Research Centre (NARC), where 300,000 disease-free plants have been produced via tissue culture.

These high-yielding variations will have more shelf life, an essential requirement for export.

The two varieties have been endorsed by the Sindh Seed Council (SSC) for commercial cultivation in the province, the largest grower of the country’s bananas.

A labor packing bananas into wooden boxes at a Hyderabad fruit market. (APP)

Statistics showed that bananas are cultivated across an area of 80,000 acres in Pakistan.

Nonetheless, according to the Food & Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, the per-acre yield in Pakistan is lower than in China and India, which produce more than ten tonnes per acre.

Bananas are the globe’s most exported fresh fruit with a volume of $10 billion per year. They are a vital source of income for thousands of rural households in developing countries.

(Reddit)

Nonetheless, agrochemical-intensive production and declining producer prices have given rise to many environmental and social challenges.

As per the FAO, the global production of bananas and tropical fruits is projected to grow at 1.8% per year between 2019 and 2028, after registering a 2.3% per year growth in the previous decade.

Under the baseline scenario, production is forecasted to exceed 255 million tonnes by 2028 slightly.

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