Costa Rican banana industry unites to block Panama disease

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Costa Rican banana industry unites to block Panama disease

Costa Rica's Agriculture and Foreign Trade Ministers recently met with heads from the National Banana Cooperation (CORBANA) to discuss the industry's more pressing issues. banana_plant_ffp

The first of the two meetings took place on May 20 with Agriculture Minister Luis Felipe Arauz, and was dominated by how best to prevent Panama disease from entering the country from Asia and Africa.

CORBANA general manager Jorge Sauma said despite the catastrophic disease not yet having crossed the Pacific, producers, trading companies, the Plant Health Service and the National Plant Disease Commission are working together to implement measures to prevent it ever reaching the country.

Minister Arauz also expressed his appreciation for the joint effort of CORBANA and the industry to adopt a single management model for its environmental and social commitment.

At the second meeting, a week later, the heads met with Foreign Trade Minister Alexander Mora and discussed various topics like market conditions, competition, the free trade agreement with the European Union and the registration of a geographical seal 'Banana from Costa Rica' to internationally recognize the quality of the country's fruit.

CORBANA president Eduardo Gomez said so far the banana sector had increased its exports by 3.7% to US$850 million, compared with 2012. Around 48% of exports were sent to Europe and 41% to the U.S.





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