In Colombia, intensify the fight against fusarium bananas TR4


In Colombia, intensify the fight against fusarium bananas TR4

02/19/2020

Strain TR4 strongly affected exports, as banana production was suspended on an area of ​​185 hectares

A new biosafety laboratory has been established in Colombia to identify the TR4 strain of fusarium wilt of bananas.

According to Freshplaza, FruitNews writes that due to the outbreak of fusarium in 2019, the entire banana production industry in the country was significantly affected. So the supply of bananas from the Department of Guahira decreased by 44.4% compared with the volumes in 2018, from the department of Bolivar – by 5.4%, Cesar – by 16.1%. Banana exports from the Magdalen Department in 2019 amounted to only $ 318 thousand (1% of total export sales).

“Strain TR4 had a major impact on exports, as banana production was suspended on an area of ​​185 hectares. Despite this, the result was positive. In total, last year, 32.5 thousand containers of bananas were exported from the departments of Magdalen, Guahira and Cesar, which roughly coincides with the volumes of 2018, ”commented Jose Francisco Zuniga, director of the union of banana producers of the departments of Magdalen and Guahira.

Read also: FAO: Strain TR4 can lead to 100% destruction of bananas

Given the experience gained in combating fungal disease, this year the banana sector will focus on containing the strain in the northern regions in order to maintain export volumes and maintain the result of the previous two years. If the precautionary measures work quite efficiently, the supply volumes will grow by 5% -10% relative to 2019.

The sector has already strengthened phytosanitary measures in accordance with the new protocol. On plantations where the strain was not found, prevention is carried out. At the entrance and exit, vehicles are disinfected. Each plantation has invested more than $ 20 thousand in the fight against the spread of the disease.

In 2019, 175 ha of banana plantations in Colombia were affected by strain TR4. In this regard, the country declared a state of emergency, and neighboring producing countries, Venezuela and Costa Rica, completely banned the import of Colombian bananas.

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