Banana Production

135 countries produce around 153 million tonnes of banana and plantain anually. 200 million people in the world get at least 5% of their calorie intake from bananas and plantains.

The Banana Industry

Bananas are the world’s most exported fresh fruit and a main source of income for thousands of rural households in developing economies. Yet the industry faces pressing social, economic and environmental issues.

Banana Consumption

88% of the global banana and plantain production is consumed locally. International banana trade is worth about US$12 billion.

World Banana Forum Members

The World Banana Forum,the WBF has grown exponentially since its inception, with members comprising retailers, importers, producers, scientists, consumers groups, governments, researchers, trade unions and civil organisations.

TR4 Global Network

Building on the success of its internal TR4 Task Force - created in 2013 - the WBF is now working on establishing the TR4 Global Network (TR4GN), acknowledging the need to invite far-reaching support from all interested parties in the process of halting TR4.

Who We Are

The World Banana Forum and FAO are establishing the TR4 Global Network (TR4GN), a leading platform for exchange and collaboration that aims at becoming a knowledge hub for awareness and prevention of the spread of the disease. TR4GN supports tools, information about technologies, capacity development materials, and any other material that may contribute to generating awareness and knowledge to contain the disease. This not only renews the involvement of current members of the Task Force, but advocates current and future action towards potential external partners.

Areas of Work


TR4 Facts

Tropical race 4 (TR4) is a strain of the soil-borne fungus, Fusarium oxysporum f. sp cubense (Foc).

TR4 affects many varieties, particularly the Cavendish that provides around half of global banana supply.

TR4 produces three types of spores that can remain dormant in the soil for decades.

TR4 can be transmitted via infected planting materials and infested soil particles through several means such as shoes, vehicles, farm tools and equipment.

The most effective approach to combat TR4 is prevention of its spread into clean areas and immediate containment when it is detected.

TR4 has been reported present in more than 17 countries, across three continents.

TR4 penetrates the plant via the roots, multiplies and blocks the vascular system, cutting off the supply of water and nutrients.

Fungicides and soil fumigants are not efficient in controlling or eradicating TR4 from infested soil.

Irrigation – drainage water, surface run-off water and floods play an important role in spreading of TR4 from infested fields to neighbouring areas.


TR4 Global Network

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