Markets and trade


Bananas rank as a leading crop in world agricultural production and trade. In response to fast population growth in producing countries as well as expanding global import demand, the crop has seen rapidly increasing production and trade volumes in recent decades. Since the bulk of banana cultivation is conducted informally by smallholder farmers, precise figures on global banana production are, however, difficult to obtain. Available estimates indicate that average global banana production rose from 69 million tonnes in 2000-2002 to 115 million tonnes in 2017-2019, at an approximate value of 40 billion USD (FAOSTAT 2019).

Based on 2019 figures, the global banana export industry generates around 13.5 billion USD per year (FAOSTAT 2019). However, it is important to note that only around 18 percent of the total global banana production is traded in the international market; the rest is consumed locally, most importantly in large producing countries such as India, China, and Brazil, and in some African countries where bananas contribute largely to people’s diets.

Banana Preliminary Market Results 2020. The Banana Preliminary Market Results are compiled using provisional estimates to provide timely first insights into recent market developments. It complements the Banana Market Review, which is issued on an annual basis to Members and Observers of the Sub-Group on Bananas of the Intergovernmental Group on Bananas and Tropical Fruits and offers a comprehensive overview of previous-year developments in banana trade. Both publications are prepared by the Team on Responsible Global Value Chains, Markets and Trade Division, FAO, which provides research and analyses on global value chains for agricultural commodities, and economic data and analyses on tropical fruits.

Preliminary assessment of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on trade in bananas and tropical fruits. Amid an extraordinarily rapid decline in global economic activity and international transport, world supply and demand for bananas and tropical fruits have experienced COVID-19-related disruptions and contractions through several channels of transmission. This article presents a preliminary assessment of the current market situation and potential implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for the production, trade and consumption of bananas and tropical fruits in 2020.

Banana Statistical Compendium 2019The Banana Statistical compendium, issued once a year, contains information on global banana trade. Its sources include information provided by FAO member nations, traders, news bulletins and the opinions of commodity specialists and represents the most authoritative and up-to-date source of information on the world banana economy.

Previous editions: 2018 | 2017

Banana Market Review Snapshot February 2020. This snapshot describes the 2019 market situation and highlights the medium-term projections for world banana markets for the period 2020-2029. Production, consumption and trade developments for bananas are discussed. The snapshot includes an introductory discussion of the key characteristics, opportunities, as well as important risks and uncertainties that may shape world banana markets during the outlook period.

Medium-term Outlook: Prospects for global production and trade in bananas and tropical fruits 2019 to 2028. Bananas and, particularly, tropical fruits constitute a significant source of economic growth, income, food security and nutrition for the rural areas of many developing countries. The projections for bananas and tropical fruits presented in this medium-term outlook span a ten year horizon, from 2019 to 2028.

Banana Fusarium Wilt Tropical Race 4: A mounting threat to global banana markets? The recent spread and potential future impact of the disease on global banana trade. This Commodity Focus is excerpted from the FAO Food Outlook, November 2019 edition.

Bananas and major tropical fruits in Latin America and the Caribbean – The significance of the region to world supply. This article represents an introductory background note to the medium-term outlook for bananas and major tropical fruits in Latin America and the Caribbean, which has been published in the FAO Food Outlook, May 2019 edition.

Ecuador’s Banana Sector under Climate Change: An economic and biophysical assessment to promote a sustainable and climate-compatible strategy
This study is an integrated assessment of climate impacts on the banana value chain in support of the Ecuador initiatives towards sustainable and climate-adapted strategies. Evidence was generated on: (i) banana suitability under climate change in Ecuador and other banana producing countries; (ii) climate impacts on yields and potential diseases incidence for bananas in Ecuador; (iii) carbon footprint and greenhouse gas emissions from production to consumption, including transportation and waste disposal.


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Pascal Liu

Sabine Altendorf

Giuseppe Bonavita