The banana is one step closer to disappearing

Found on National Geographic on Wednesday, 14 August 2019
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Panama disease Tropical Race 4—or TR4—is an infection of the banana plant by a fungus of the genus Fusarium.

Banana agriculture is itself partly to blame for the potential of the fungus to spread. Commercial plantations grow almost exclusively one clonal variety, called the Cavendish; these plants’ identical genetics mean they are also identically susceptible to disease.

Regardless of the method used, creating just one viable replacement is not a long-term solution. “We need to deploy the rich biodiversity by generating a suite of new banana varieties, not just one,” says Kema. “Monoculture is by definition unsustainable.”

Monoculture is never a solution and will always end with a catastrophe. The more variety there is, the more stability there is. Cheap mass-production does not work as a long term business plan.