New Delhi, Feb 7 (IANS) India has started exporting bananas to Russia and the export volumes are planned to be increased in the future as, media reports said.
Russia was earlier importing bananas from Ecuador in large quantities but has now decided to stop buying the fruit from the Latin American country as the product has found to be tainted.
“The first batch of bananas from India reached Russia in January 2024, with the next supply planned by the end of this February. The volumes of export of Indian bananas to the Russian market will be increased in the future,” the report cited Russian Federal Service of Veterinary and Phytosanitary Supervision as saying.
According to some media reports, Moscow has taken strong exception to Ecuador sending military equipment bought from Russia to the USA for onward supply to Ukraine. The decision to stop banana imports from Ecuador is seen as a fallout of this development.
However, Russian authorities did not mention diplomatic differences with Ecuador as the reason for stopping imports from the country.
Russia’s food safety watchdog has discussed issues related to supplies of fruits from India to Russia with representatives of the country’s Directorate of Plant Protection, Quarantine and Storage of the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare. The Indian side expressed interest in expansion of the range of supplies of fruits to the Russian market, the report said.
According to UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), India is the world’s biggest producer of bananas, having produced 33 million tons of bananas in 2023, followed by China (12 million tons), and Indonesia (8.7 million tons).