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Banana Economics Forum Bananas are the number one exported fruit in the world, and the number one fruit eaten in nearly every country. This forum is for discussions of the economics of bananas involving producers, economists, consumers, transporters, wholesalers, and governments.


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Old 07-23-2009, 03:33 PM   #41 (permalink)
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Default Re: Marketing bananas in the US

Good god, it cost nearly a dollar in fertilizer to produce a nice stalk of bananas
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Old 07-23-2009, 03:35 PM   #42 (permalink)
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Default Re: Marketing bananas in the US

Yeah, but we're talking economies of grand scale, here. In this case, Chiquita also owns the majority stake in the company that produces their fert. The big plantations, however, spend a lot more on irrigation and pest control.

Smallholders are using "free" sources of fertilizer, namely manure and volcanic ash, so that doesn't factor into their pricing. They're also likely to be depending on nature to irrigate, or to have only the most basic irrigation canals (although this is often quite an ingenious system.) Equally, with the permaculture methods used by smallholders, they're actually getting quite a bit more than just the bananas off of their hectares (and a typical smallholding here is between 2-5 ha or 5-12 acres) - they're also getting papaya, melon, and in many cases citrus as well, which helps to boost the bucks they're getting for each harvest. The permaculture methods used here also seem to help control the spread of most pests and diseases - for example, papayas seem to give a certain level of resistance to Fusarium wilt. The big monocultures aren't taking advantage of this, which means that they have to use chemicals.
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Old 07-23-2009, 03:41 PM   #43 (permalink)
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Default Re: Marketing bananas in the US

I suppose the cost of living in rural ecuador is not that high either, but when I get to thinking about potash at $0.40/lb and nitrogen at about the same price and then the cost of spraying for sigatoka. I think I'd choose a different crop. As a side note it costs me about $4.00 to make a banana stalk without even figuring in any labor.
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Old 07-26-2009, 08:15 AM   #44 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Nicolas Naranja View Post
Good god, it cost nearly a dollar in fertilizer to produce a nice stalk of bananas
You might be able to change your fertilizer source and reduce that cost.

In my area, the green waste picked up by the trash company is composted and one of the collection/disposal sites. I can get all of the compost I want for 10 bucks a yard. A yard of compost covers a lot more than 10 pstems....

I've had no problems with it...the temps of their piles get over 160F and everything, except the bacteria, is killed.

Most of the green waste here is grassclippings and shrub/tree trimmings. They shred, pile, and water it. Easily done!
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Old 07-26-2009, 09:06 AM   #45 (permalink)
 
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Red face Re: Marketing bananas in the US

In the 7/24 LA TM Report the following was shown: ---BANANAS: MARKET STEADY. 40 lb cartons MX 13.00-14.00 poorer
quality/condition lower Burro 10.50-11.00 ZZ 14.50-17.50 mostly 16.00-16.50 20
lb cartons CB BOAT Manzano 14.50-15.00 EC BOAT Red 10.50-11.50 mostly
10.50-11.00 15 lb cartons EC BOAT Baby 10.00-12.00 mostly 10.00-11.00 cartons
institutional pack EC BOAT petite 15.00-16.00

Can someone please explain what is being quoted in this report as I have no clue as to what ZZ or petite are other than pricey. I noticed at the end of the report that 40# of the organic ZZ bananas are fetching 22.00 to 22.50.
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Old 07-26-2009, 09:27 AM   #46 (permalink)
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Default Re: Marketing bananas in the US

Nicolas, there is Black Sigatoka is in FL. What is known about it in terms of, well, can it stand cool or cold temperatures? As in, if it was to make its way to SE Louisiana what do you - or anyone - think would or could happen? There are a lot of banana plants in SE Louisiana, most of them just as part of the landscape but I know some people who grow them for the fruit as well.

Found this, which is interesting:

APSnet Feature - Black Sigatoka of Banana - Disease Note
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Old 07-26-2009, 10:27 AM   #47 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Marketing bananas in the US

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Originally Posted by bepah View Post
Most of the green waste here is grassclippings and shrub/tree trimmings. They shred, pile, and water it. Easily done!
What I'm worried about in grass clippings is getting grass seeds.
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Old 07-26-2009, 10:43 AM   #48 (permalink)
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Default Re: Marketing bananas in the US

OK, Banfan.

Quote:
40 lb cartons MX 13.00-14.00 poorer quality/condition lower Burro, ZZ 14.50-17.50 mostly 16.00-16.50
These are low-quality Burro (Orinoco) bananas from Mexico, in 40 lb cases, for $13-14 each, with higher qualtiy cases of the same lot for $14.50-17.50 each case, and the median price at $16-16.50.

Quote:
20 lb cartons CB BOAT Manzano 14.50-15.00
These are 20 lb cases of Manzanos on a boat from Colombia, for $14.50-15 each case.

Quote:
EC BOAT Red 10.50-11.50 mostly 10.50-11.00 15 lb cartons
These are 15 lb cases of Reds (Lacatan) on a boat from Ecuador, for between $10.50 and $11 each case (which is cheap for reds; I'd question their condition.)

Quote:
EC BOAT Baby 10.00-12.00 mostly 10.00-11.00 cartons
These are cases of unspecified weight of Baby Bananas (Nino or similar) on a boat from Ecuador, for between $10 and $12 each case, which says to me that they're 10 or 12 lb cases.

Quote:
institutional pack EC BOAT petite 15.00-16.00
These are Cavendishes in "institutional packs" (40lb cases), with a comment that the fruit is smaller than usual, for $15-16 each case.

Hope that helps!
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Old 07-26-2009, 03:25 PM   #49 (permalink)
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Default Re: Marketing bananas in the US

I get about 300-400lbs of nitrogen from the soil, my phosphorus levels are off the charts, the only thing I need is potash and I need a lot of it. The green waste would would be good if I was on sand but I'm on mucky clay.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bepah View Post
You might be able to change your fertilizer source and reduce that cost.

In my area, the green waste picked up by the trash company is composted and one of the collection/disposal sites. I can get all of the compost I want for 10 bucks a yard. A yard of compost covers a lot more than 10 pstems....

I've had no problems with it...the temps of their piles get over 160F and everything, except the bacteria, is killed.

Most of the green waste here is grassclippings and shrub/tree trimmings. They shred, pile, and water it. Easily done!
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Old 07-26-2009, 03:26 PM   #50 (permalink)
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Default Re: Marketing bananas in the US

ZZ stands for "imports"


Quote:
Originally Posted by banfan View Post
In the 7/24 LA TM Report the following was shown: ---BANANAS: MARKET STEADY. 40 lb cartons MX 13.00-14.00 poorer
quality/condition lower Burro 10.50-11.00 ZZ 14.50-17.50 mostly 16.00-16.50 20
lb cartons CB BOAT Manzano 14.50-15.00 EC BOAT Red 10.50-11.50 mostly
10.50-11.00 15 lb cartons EC BOAT Baby 10.00-12.00 mostly 10.00-11.00 cartons
institutional pack EC BOAT petite 15.00-16.00

Can someone please explain what is being quoted in this report as I have no clue as to what ZZ or petite are other than pricey. I noticed at the end of the report that 40# of the organic ZZ bananas are fetching 22.00 to 22.50.
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Old 07-26-2009, 03:32 PM   #51 (permalink)
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Default Re: Marketing bananas in the US

I don't think it really handles the cool and dry weather very well as it is not much of a problem in the dry/cool season. It definitely needs vegetative tissue to reproduce, but I'm not sure if it could overwinter as spores in leaf trash. My backyard seems to be an uncontrollable hotspot of black sigatoka mostly because my neighbor does nothing to control it in her banana patch and every storm that comes through blows spores on me. It is mainly a cavendish problem, and I think the reason I have it is because the bananas were planted by a previous owner from a nursery in Miami. We have cavendish bananas at the research station about 15 miles southeast of my house and they have never shown signs of sigatoka.


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Nicolas, there is Black Sigatoka is in FL. What is known about it in terms of, well, can it stand cool or cold temperatures? As in, if it was to make its way to SE Louisiana what do you - or anyone - think would or could happen? There are a lot of banana plants in SE Louisiana, most of them just as part of the landscape but I know some people who grow them for the fruit as well.

Found this, which is interesting:

APSnet Feature - Black Sigatoka of Banana - Disease Note
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Old 07-26-2009, 07:13 PM   #52 (permalink)
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What I'm worried about in grass clippings is getting grass seeds.
Well composted grass clippings have sterilized the seeds...
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Old 07-29-2009, 02:07 PM   #53 (permalink)
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Default Re: Marketing bananas in the US

I don't mean to make this into a Black Sigatoka takeover and maybe there should be a thread just for that but real quick - in such a case of - and I'm guessing - just a few bananas, would it be easier/cheaper (??) to quarantine them under, say, a big tent of some sort and nuke them or to - I guess throwing them away wouldn't solve the problem.

To keep in line with the thread, however, the commercial banana farms or whatever in FLA - there just needs to be a thread about BS (ha ha) in the United States - what do they do or will they do?
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Old 07-29-2009, 06:33 PM   #54 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicolas Naranja View Post
I get about 300-400lbs of nitrogen from the soil, my phosphorus levels are off the charts, the only thing I need is potash and I need a lot of it. The green waste would would be good if I was on sand but I'm on mucky clay.
I believe gypsum will help with the clay soil.
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Old 07-30-2009, 06:31 AM   #55 (permalink)
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Gypsum is supposed to help out with clay soils, but I think it takes a while to work.
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Old 07-30-2009, 08:33 AM   #56 (permalink)
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Default Re: Marketing bananas in the US

As far as my soil goes you would almsot have to feel it and see it for yourself to understand how good it is. The gypsum is used in clay to keep it from crusting and it provides some calcium. My soil is about 40% organic matter, 10 percent sand, and 50 percent clay. This combination of components makes a soil that drains really well, holds water really well, and provides most of the necessary nutrition.


As far as black sigatoka goes in Florida, most commercial growers are growing varieties that don't have big problems with sigatoka. At 70 plants I may actually have the largest Cavendish planting in the state, and I am very isolated and have not seen and sigatoka yet. At my house which is a much smaller planting, there is plenty of sigatoka and I control it through sanitation(detrashing), copper, and azoxystrobin. Nevertheless, the bulk of Florida's commercial industry is Manzano, Burro, Nam Wah, and I imagine there are some plantings of Hua Moa left. I think sigatoka is relatively easy to control on those varieties compared to cavendish.
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Old 08-05-2009, 09:43 AM   #57 (permalink)
 
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Default Re: Marketing bananas in the US

Was traveling through some of the west coast, and stopped at a roadside fruit stand. Very ripe commercial bananas from Guatemala, with Del Monte stamp on them. 4 pounds for a dollar.
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Old 08-15-2009, 11:43 AM   #58 (permalink)
 
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There are about 400 acres of commercial bananas in Dade County Florida and apparently those bananas never leave the county. I've been considering planting an acre or two and honestly have been trying to wrap my head around selling that many bananas! I never see anything other than chiquita, dole, or del monte in the grocery stores but there must be someone selling off those 400 acres that I just have not come across. Does anyone have any clue about the volume of bananas that moves through a typical grocery store in a week? I saw on that Ecuador site that a box of bananas was a little less than $5, but when I check the AMS for the port of Miami a box is $14. What is the real price point, the grocer sells them for $27 a box.
Normally, end users doesn't know the real cost of a banana. We are selling bananas, frozen Banana and other products by container.
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