Stefan li Rous
StefanliRous at austin.rr.com
Thu Apr 19 22:16:27 PDT 2012
> Global chocolate crisis looms
That goes along with the stuff I've been reading about the Cavendish
banana. As a monoculture, it is very vulnerable to a new version of
the fungus that wiped out the Gros Michel banana in the 50's.
Africa is also struggling with blight in bananas that are daily food
For a lot more on this subject, including a bunch of stuff on bananas
and their history and an interesting read, see this book:
Banana: The Fate of the Fruit That Changed the World
Hudson Street Press
From Publishers Weekly
The world's most humble fruit has caused inordinate damage to nature
and man, and Popular Science journalist Koeppel (To See Every Bird on
Earth) embarks on an intelligent, chock-a-block sifting through the
havoc. Seedless, sexless bananas evolved from a wild inedible fruit
first cultivated in Southeast Asia, and was probably the apple that
got Adam and Eve in trouble in the Garden of Eden. From there the
fruit traveled to Africa and across the Pacific, arriving on U.S.
shores probably with the Europeans in the 15th century. However, the
history of the banana turned sinister as American businessmen caught
on to the marketability of this popular, highly perishable fruit then
grown in Jamaica. Thanks to the building of the railroad through Costa
Rica by the turn of the century, the United Fruit company flourished
in Central America, its tentacles extending into all facets of
government and industry, toppling banana republics and igniting labor
wars. Meanwhile, the Gros Michel variety was annihilated by a fungus
called Panama disease (Sigatoka), which today threatens the favored
Cavendish, as Koeppel sounds the alarm, shuttling to genetics-
engineering labs from Honduras to Belgium. His sage, informative study
poses the question fairly whether it's time for consumers to reverse a
century of strife and exploitation epitomized by the purchase of one
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier
Inc. All rights reserved.
"Clear, engaging…admirable…part historical narrative and
part pop-science adventure."
-San Francisco Chronicle --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
bananas-msg (104K) 12/ 1/11 Period bananas. When and where known.
THLord Stefan li Rous Barony of Bryn Gwlad Kingdom of Ansteorra
Mark S. Harris Austin, Texas StefanliRous at austin.rr.com
**** See Stefan's Florilegium files at: http://www.florilegium.org ****
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