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Presented By: Emmanuel NJUKWE

Event: ECHO East Africa Highlands Symposium 2014 (2014-10-28)

The Great Lakes region is a major production area of banana (Musa ssp.), with higher per capita consumption levels than anywhere else in the world,

The region is home to the East African highland bananas (EAHB), which are an important food and cash crop for more than 30 million people in the region,

In Burundi, banana is an important source of economic and social capital for the farming population with annual production estimated at 1.850.000 tons (230 kg/person/year) on average,

Its cultivation is practiced by more than 90% of the farming household,

It is cultivated in nearly all agro-ecological zones with multi-purpose use and high agronomic potential.

Banana is produced all year round, Relatively not sensitive to climatic risks, Intervenes during long drought period when other food crops are unable,

Regular source of income for smallholders, Producers sell banana beer/wine throughout the year,

In Rwanda and in DR Congo, banana is the second major food crop mostly cultivated in subsistence systems,

About 213,000 ha of 23% arable land devoted to banana with yields of 14 tons/ha/year