Many people believe that bananas do not have to be organic due to their protective thick skin. Well, get ready for some low-down on bananas that will enhance your health! You see, most Americans believe conventionally grown bananas are safe because they have never been on the 'Dirty Dozen' list of vegetables and fruits that supposedly reports which fresh produce has the highest amount of pesticides in them. So, non-organic bananas must be safe for you and your family, right?
Let me share a few facts to prevent you from unknowingly consuming harmful chemicals, becoming victims of industry, and possibly prevent sicknesses that you would never suspect come from eating "healthy fruit" like bananas. Plus, I will show you why the 'Dirty Dozen' list is not the most trustworthy source for healthy produce.
My research of this topic began when I found out that in 2019 Dole Food Co., got sued by more than 1,000 plantation workers for all the injuries they receive from chemicals they use on bananas. Many of these workers have serious skin problems and many have kidney failures. I found out that Dole Food Co. and Dow Chemical Co. are not worried about losing the cases because all these highly toxic chemicals are allowed by the Department of Agriculture.
Conventional bananas are sprayed with synthetic fertilizers, insecticides, and herbicides. To prevent pest damage, each bunch of bananas on a tree is enclosed in a large plastic bag into which pesticides are inserted. Some of these applications reach the edible tissue of the fruit. The toxins used to grow conventional bananas are not just on the outside. You cannot just get rid of them by removing the peel. They get into the soil. One toxic insecticide widely used in banana production is chlorpyrifos. Children are especially sensitive to chlorpyrifos toxicity. The chemical can disrupt brain development and impair cognitive functions, measured by intelligence tests. Not even saying that more than 90% of conventional bananas are GMO and they do not even inform you about it on fruit stickers.
On these pictures you can see what banana plantation workers wear and how well they are protected. Also, you can get an idea of the amount of chemicals sprayed over them and on them. Pretty scary, huh? Why aren't they in the 'Dirty Dozen' you would ask? The answer is as simple as it can be in our days... Money! Bananas are #1 selling fruit and despite its lowest price it is still the most profitable fruit on the planet. They profit more than $44 billion each year and are the 4th largest selling product after rice, wheat, and milk. That is why there is no way you will ever see them in the 'Dirty Dozen'.
Organic farmers use natural fertilizers like manure and seaweed and rely on insect predators rather than pesticides to keep pests and weeds at bay. Organic is much safer for you and the environment. One recent study found that Spectacled Caimans, fish-eating crocodiles native to Costa Rica, had higher concentrations of pesticides in their blood if they lived near banana fields than Caimans in wilderness. Organic bananas grown without synthetic insecticides and fungicides are only slightly more expensive than conventional bananas. Paying a few extra coins for organic, protects you from all these toxic chemicals that can harm your health and health of your loved ones in multiple ways. Make smart choices, stay healthy and beautiful for a long time!