Newly Developed Banana Could Save Hundreds of Thousands of Lives

Newly Developed Banana Could Save Hundreds of Thousands of Lives

A lot of people are still suspicious about GMOs, or “genetically modified organisms.”  But it’s hard to argue against this.

For the past ten years, researchers in Australia have been working on a new type of banana that could save hundreds of thousands of lives annually. The scientists crossbred two types, a normal Cavendish banana (what you’re used to eating) and a smaller type from New Guinea that’s extremely high in vitamin A.

That’s where it’s important, because about 750,000 children die every year from a vitamin A deficiency, mostly in Africa.  So these new bananas are bigger, easier to grow, and packed with a boatload of vitamin A than the kind people eat in places like Uganda.

The weird part is all that vitamin A makes the bananas orange (like carrots).  The peel is slightly orange, and the part you eat is orange too.  (There’s an “orange you glad I didn’t say banana” joke in here somewhere.) Now, the next step is trying to grow them on a massive scale in Africa and other parts of the world. The researchers still have another six years of red tape to get through, but right now, it’s looking really good.

And I bet you’re wondering who’s behind this whole thing. It’s not just some science corporation getting a lot of grants, but most of the funding has come from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. So, for once, thank you Microsoft!

Go to to see pics of these new fruits!



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