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05 October 2022

CORBANA presents the virtues of Costa Rican bananas at Fruit Attraction, endorsed by its sustainability and innovation.

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The National Banana Corporation of Costa Rica is the architect of an entire sustainable production ecosystem and is a reference in R+D+i for the conservation and development of bananas at an international level.

The Costa Rican banana industry is the only one in the world that produces this fruit in a socially responsible and environmentally sustainable manner.

Madrid/San José, October 4, 2022. The National Banana Corporation of Costa Rica (CORBANA) participates as an exhibitor at Fruit Attraction, the largest international event of the fruit and vegetable sector that began its 14th edition today in Madrid to publicize the benefits of Costa Rican bananas in all its aspects. 

CORBANA, the private-public entity that acts as the official promoter and regulator of the product, has its own space within the official stand of Costa Rica (Essential Costa Rica, at stand 6D08). 

Costa Rica is one of the three most important banana exporting countries in the world. In 2021, the country exported some 129 million boxes of bananas (c. 18.14 kilos each), or about 2.3 million tons. The target markets are mainly the United States (c. 34%) and Europe (c. 61%), led by the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Italy, Spain (c. 6.63%), Belgium, Portugal and Finland. 

Thanks to CORBANA's activity, the Costa Rican banana industry is the only one in the world that produces this fruit in a socially responsible and environmentally sustainable manner. 

Jorge Sauma, General Manager of CORBANA, comments: "We are very pleased to be at Fruit Attraction, as it is the ideal showcase to promote awareness of Costa Rican bananas in the professional world of export, distribution and consumption in Europe; and not only to be identified as an exquisite and quality fruit, but especially as a competitive product by prioritizing the commitment to the environment and the welfare of local communities and people. CORBANA has been promoting sustainability throughout the banana value chain for three decades, an attribute highly demanded today by consumers, companies and investors".

Responsible production with the European Union's Geographical Indication (GI) seal. 
Among its ESG attributes, it is worth noting that 100% of the farms comply with waste management and recycling protocols; 93% of the packing plants have water recirculation programs and more than half of the farms (63%) are certified as Carbon Neutral by accredited entities with the objective of reaching 100% in the short term. It is no coincidence that Costa Rican bananas obtained the EU's Geographical Indication (GI) seal more than 10 years ago in recognition of the social and environmental conditions in which the fruit is produced and as a differentiating aspect of origin and quality.

In order to ensure that sustainability levels are maintained and improved, CORBANA conducts regular audits of aspects such as training and skills, waste management, and safe pesticide handling. On the social side, issues such as minimum wages and freedom of association are verified.

As part of Fruit Attraction 2022, visitors can also learn from CORBANA's team of professionals how much of this sustainable practice is supported by innovation, where the Costa Rican banana sector is recognized for its research efforts to find biotechnological products to protect crops, reduce the use of agrochemicals and increase the productivity of farms in a natural way. The increase in productivity of the Costa Rican banana sector in recent years, considering that less than 1% of the country's territory is dedicated to the cultivation of this fruit, is a clear example of how the strengthening of its agricultural innovation has yielded results. 

CORBANA's Scientific Research Center is one of the most prestigious centers in Latin America and all of its research is made available to all national producers. This division focuses on solving problems related to: agrochemical reduction, soil health and quality, integrated disease management, biological control, climate change, good agricultural practices, environmental management and technical services to the producer. 

CORBANA organizes the International Banana Congress on the challenges of the industry, which in May 2023 will celebrate its 9th edition in Miami. Next year's congress will have as one of its main topics the threat of the Fusarium Tropical Race 4 fungus to world banana production.

The banana agro-export activity is an economic and social engine for Costa Rica, generating around 40,000 direct jobs and 100,000 indirect jobs that are permanent, since the harvesting of the fruit and the general maintenance of the plantations is carried out throughout the year. In the province of Limón alone, 81% of the local labor force depends on the crop. Foreign exchange income from banana exports totaled US$1,087.1 million in 2021. This translates into a 38.2% share of agricultural exports, 8.7% of the country's total exports and about 2% of the country's GDP. 

Stand 6D08 in the Costa Rica area