It’s almost banana day and we thought we should take this opportunity to discuss all things bananas. They are one of the most widely enjoyed fruits globally with many eating one every day. They have a unique history that no one really thinks about when eating them. Where are they from? When did they come to the UK? Are they even a fruit? Well, let’s find out!
History of Bananas
Firstly, lets discuss their origins. Bananas originated mainly from India and the rest of Southeast Asia. In 327 B.C. they were brought to Africa by Arab conquerors before being carried to the New World by the first explorers and missionaries to go to the Caribbean. The mass production of bananas then started in 1834 before the consumption of them exploded in the late 1880’s. Since bananas came to the UK their popularity has grown rapidly. In the 40s and 50s they were even described as representing luxury.
Now we eat on average 5 million bananas in the UK alone. They are a popular fruit as they are cheap and full of nutrients with the ability to give anyone a good boost of energy but where do they all come from? Well, a large majority of our bananas are imported from Latin America. In fact, 90% of all fair-trade bananas come from Latin America and the Caribbean.
With us consuming so many bananas on average every year many people don’t think much about picking one up however they have a unique history. Many would be shocked to find out that bananas “parent plant” isn’t actually a tree but a herb. The banana itself is even more shockingly not a fruit but a berry. In the past these exotic berries now known as bananas used to come in all shapes and sizes with furry ones and even striped ones.
For so long we have all taken these fruits for granted however they have been under threat of extinction many times. As recent as 2021 bananas faced their own pandemic. A disease known as Tropical race 4 threatened to wipe out the hole banana industry and this is not the first time a disease has threated this globally enjoyed food.
Next time you have an over ripe banana don’t bin the nations favourite fruit instead try this fun filled recipes to use the bananas up.
Baked Banana Oatmeal
- dash of cinnamon
- coconut oil for greasing
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1 banana, mashed
- non-dairy milk
- 1 tbs chia seeds
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ cup chopped dates or raisins
- dash of salt
- optional topping- peanut butter
- Start by pre heating your oven to 350 degrees. Then grease a baking tray with coconut oil.
- Secondly measure all your ingredients out and pour them in to a large mixing bowl. Mix them well them pour out on to the baking tray.
- Place it in the oven for 25 minutes or until its golden brown on the edges.
- Once out the oven serves the oatmeal warm topped with peanut butter and enjoy!