08 May 2006
this is not pressing news, I imagine, but I find it very sad news. while normally I don't partake of bananas here in the West, primarily because the ones they sell in the supermarkets are bred for sweetness and have a glycemic index that's through the roof, I do partake of bananas when I'm in India. so many varieties, sold off the banana branch itself (branch? stalk?), many of which are nowhere near as sweet as the ones in the UK or US. plus, it has its own biodegradable packaging. how cool is that?
so we're losing species of bananas in India. much as corn has become subject to market forces that produce cattlefeed and high fructose corn syrup, bananas are also now starting to narrow in scope. perhaps we can hope for a banana revival, much as the botanists gave us the heirloom rose revival or the farmer's markets saw that specialty tomato boom. but those are first-world, wealthy-country products, no? the banana is a solidly third-world product. so a loss for us, a loss for the third world economy. I'm not arguing for some sort of return to the Ur-banana, mind you. just a moment of mourning for the impending loss of a variety of tastes some may never have the chance to experience. forget the Taj. just go for the bananas.
fab pic from the Washington Banana Museum. I kid you not.
Posted by tekne at 8:59 AM