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Banana: the fate of the worlds most loved fruit...and a question about bananas

Hey everyone! I am in a class callled Horticultural Book CLub, and we, as a class, are reading a book called Banana: the fate of the worlds most loved fruit. I would suggest this book to any fruit lover and banana eater. There is alot of info. The author wrote the book because of how the banana inspired him, and mor eimportantly, the danger it is facing. There is this fungal disease which is begging to take out our massive, practically cloned fields of cavindish bananas. This disease killed off the first variety to come to N. America (Big Micheal) but thankfully Cavindish replaced it swiftly. I jsut thought this site should be aware of the precarious position bananas are in. The author of the book has a website devoted to keeping people informed about bananas, the industry and in general. HEre is the website:
Here is my question......can plantaines and other bananas normally cooked as a starch source be ripened and made sweet to be eaten raw? A lady from vegsource group says you can wait until plantaine's skin are black and eat them raw. What do you all think?
Eric D.

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Yes you can eat plantains raw, I think Andrew made a ripening guide, basically wait until the entire thing is all black and mushy!

Mine didn't come out that great, a few did, taste sort of like a semi spicy semi sweet banana in a weird way. I think you eat it all including the seed-ribbons.

Really, I prefer bananas, I read an article recently, that was on vegsource linking to naturalnews, about Chiquita and how they are responsible for thousands of deaths and chemical destruction of countries, politicians, governments, you name it they done it, super corrupt, ruined careers, indigenous peoples, slave labor, pay people in "credits" controlled mafia and shot people down who protested for wages, all of that.

I buy dole bananas not sure of their story.

also we can thank them Chiquita (maybe others) for making the tastier varieties of bananas go extinct, particularly the one before the cavendish...

sad really, we needs a banans revolution!

Damn... I wanted to stop buying dole because of their history. I swear, no matter what you do on this planet, you end up supporting some lunatic psychopath and his agenda, I'm really tired of this BS. 

I've been eating plantains the last week more than usual actually. If you get em to ripen to black correctly, there quite a nice change. :O)

how do they taste different from  bananas?

hey eric

i bought and started to read this book.. got maybe 100 pgs deep when i gave up.. it got really boring for me.. went in to way too much detail on the history of how bananas got to the US.. i'm not recommending against it, but if you're not really curious as to the specifics in the background of the banana, it may not hold your attention.. does it break from this historical synopsis to any other information about the fruit

i will say tho, one part if found really interesting is when he explained the perspective of how the banana may have been the forbidden fruit in the garden of eden

and i also eat plantains raw from time to time.. actually have a couple in my fruit bowl now that are about ripe.. def gotta be completely black and really soft.. here's the page on Andrew's site about plantains.. a link to the ripening guide is on the bottom of the page:

Oh I would not recomend not eating bananas, the book has not convinced me of that. If anything, eat more! The more money the 'banana barons' have, the more likely they can do the research to keep bananas good and healthy. Ive only read to chapter 8, which concludes with how the banana traveled to the different continents. So far so good, though I imagine it might get borring. Ya the banana industry has a prety tight hold on the governments they opperate in, not all but.. *shrugs*. Ive not heard of the shootings and stuff, although I do know that when cavindish production moves in, alot of times small family farmers, offtentimes each individual/village with a different variety of banana, becomes extinct. I think the main thing cavindish producers could do right now is to make sure and not narrow their gene pool too much!
Thank you for the web site.
READ THIS TO SEE WHAT IM TALKING ABOUT - how corporate monoculture ...

Eric, what the barrons you propose giving more money to propose to do, and are already testing out, is genetically modifying the bananas (crazyness, you read up on GMO's???), as well as even MORE super duper chemical pesticide crazy mutagenic stuff. We need organic biodynamic permaculture bananas, ones where the soil is re-mineralized, so sprays, no synth. chems, no poo or animal part/bone ferts, none of that....

What is needed is proper growing, diversity, etc, instead they selectively overbred and artificially "protected" one strain in mass quantity and this is WHY they are all dying out. The changes they make will be negative unless they stick with the plan I am outlying here, or at least most of it.


you are right, that is what they will do and what you said is what we should do. I should think before I speak a bit more hehehe, thanks for setting things right and straight. Too bad they wont spend research on banana breeding as much as they probably will on GMO bananas. There are probably more than a thousand varieties to breed with.
Hmmm, got me interested now - I just got the book from the library

I've read that book twice and have written two papers for school, one about the demise of the Cavendish banana and the other about banana corporation ethics.  If you want even more information about the ethics side there is a 2009 documentary titled, "Bananas!*", about Dole using the U.S. banned pesticide Nemagon in Central America despite knowing the health risks of the product.  They've recently released a sequel to the film, "Big Boys Gone Bananas!*".



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