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India: World's No.1 banana grower?

Stored under Caption This!GamesMiscellaneousNewsRecipesRelated EBay AuctionsReviewsVideosVisual Stimulation on May 8, 2006

More than three millenniums after King Alexander introduced banana to the world after having it in India, the United Nations has voiced concern at the shrinking number of wild bananas in their original home.

The depletion of wild bananas is leading to loss of gene sources needed to combat pests and disease in the fruit, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation said on Wednesday.

FAO has called for a systematic exploration of the wild bananas' remaining forest habitats in India's remotest regions and the jungles of Southeast Asia to catalogue surviving species as well as conservation efforts to offset loss of the species' natural habitat and research on expanding the use of wild bananas in breeding programs.

India is the world's largest banana grower, with an annual production of 16.8 million tonnes, or over 20 percent of total world output of 72.6 million tonnes in 2005 of the world's most exported fruit and fourth most important food commodity after rice, wheat and maize in terms of production value.

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