A look at the world production of bananas in 2014, suggests that the thirst for bananas in North America cannot be quenched by local production. While around 7,000 metric tons of bananas were produced in North America that year, it was dwarfed by Asia, which produced more than 63 million metric tons that year. While Asia is the dominant region in terms of production quantity, South American countries have the strongest presence regarding banana exports. In 2016, Ecuador was the biggest player in the market, commanding a 23.3 percent share of banana exports worldwide.
Consumer demands for quality and sustainability meant that the United States began to import organic bananas in 2013, having not imported such bananas in 2011 or 2012. Unsurprisingly, Ecuador was the largest supplier of those organic banana imports. What is impressive from the Ecuadorian perspective is the 39 percent import value share that year.
Banana exporters will likely continue their attempts to expand their influence on North American markets. The amount of bananas imported into Canada has increased year on year since 2008 and bananas beat out all other fresh fruits in terms of per capita consumption in the United States. After all, the energy rich content of the banana and its edibility on the go mean it isn’t likely to lose its place among North America’s favorite fruits.