We may be on the verge of a banana crisis.
A fungus that devastates banana plants has travelled east and is now in Latin America.
A national emergency has been declared in places like Colombia where bananas are big business.
The “TR4 fungus” was first identified in soil samples from Taiwan in the early 1990’s.
No known fungicide or biocontrol measure has proven effective against TR4.
Bananas produced in infected soil are safe for humans to eat, but the plants eventually stop bearing fruit.
Consumers in importer nations like Canada might eventually have to deal with higher prices and fewer bananas for their cereal. But for millions in Latin America, the Caribbean, Africa, and Asia, however, bananas are a fundamental source of nutrition.