SYDNEY, Aug. 16 (PNA/Xinhua) — According to a new research, Australia’s highest selling supermarket product, the banana, could be extinct within a decade, local media reported on Tuesday.
The threat could be coming from something called the Sigatoka complex, made up from three fungal diseases, which poses a huge risk to the world’s banana supply, said PLOS Genetics, a British-based journal which published the report five days ago.
American plant pathologist Ioannis Stergiopoulos was quoted in the journal as saying the Sigatoka complex’s fungal diseases – yellow Sigatoka, eumusae leaf spot and black Sigatoka – could potentially wipe out supply in the next five to 10 years.
Black Sigatoka poses the greatest risk, capable of not only shutting down the immune system of the banana, but also producing enzymes to break down the plant’s cell walls.
More than five million bananas are eaten every day in Australia, said the Australian Banana Growers Council.
The Queensland icon is a healthy and nutritious snack, packed full of potassium, vitamin C, vitamin B6, folate, niacin and riboflavin.
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