Bananas on the runway to take off:

Departure: Ecuador Packing House

Arrival: Global Markets

In today’s post I am bringing to you the stage at which our trip as bananas gets underway: the packing house.

In the following video you can see where our trip as globetrotter bananas begins:

So, where is this cable system taking us to?

Believe it or not, it is actually leading us to your supermarket ;-).  As shown, we start the journey with the most eco-friendly means of transport: a human-powered pushing and pulling system.

And the first stop in the route is the packing house.

You probably know already that our harvest involves procedures designed to reach the world markets in perfect conditions.

For example, in our latitudes falling raindrops tend to be large, often as large as gooseberries, sometimes continuing for hours. Thus, a well-designed drainage system is crucial at our farms. We bananas love sun, heat and moisture but, if our roots remain soaked for long during extreme rains, they may begin to rot.

Our drainage system:

And that is not all: Banabio uses also more controls in our packing process.

Our packing is one of the most important pre-shipment stages

In fact, packing is one of the most important pre-shipment stages. Many people are involved in its supervision and proper implementation for almost an entire day.

Let’s continue the visit to one of our farms in our packing day:

Firstly, we need to be carefully collected from the plant. The video below shows a harvest team cutting our stem and placing our bunch of bananas on a cushion. We are then taken to the cable system to transport us to the packing house:

The next task to be carried out at the packing station is to clean the bananas from the rest of the flowers:

Immediately afterwards we are thoroughly washed to remove any dust:

We are then cut in clusters and placed again into water to clean the remaining latex:

Only the bananas that meet the quality and size requirements are placed on trays, labelled and boxed.

It is important to point out that the packaging is not only our “dress” as a product, but a most important phase in the overall supply chain. Hence, workers are trained to ensure that bananas are uniformly and properly packed for safe travel. Packagers’ methods to fit the banana clusters in boxes are like putting together a jigsaw puzzle.

The tight packaging protects us from scars and brushes in the various transfers to our final destination. Ergo, post-harvest handling is vital for extending the yellow life of us bananas, both on your supermarket shelves and at home.

Indeed, if you have the opportunity to see a box at your local supermarket, you will notice that we are perfectly aligned in rows.

As you have seen above, a lot of effort is invested in the packing process! :-).