Ever wondered about the reason behind the red tips on some bananas at your local Coles or Woolies? Now a farmer has revealed the answer.
Ever wondered why some bananas at your local Coles or Woolies have waxy red tips?
If you have, you’re not alone. While 85 per cent of Australians are aware of red tip bananas, only 4 per cent know what the bright, food-grade wax actually represents.
It turns out it’s not just for decoration: Red tip bananas are grown using a specific farming method, knowing as the ecoganic farming method, that keeps them free of pesticides and other harsh chemicals that can have adverse impacts on the environment.
While the wax doesn’t preserve the banana itself, it serves as a distinctive marking to let shoppers know they’re different from other bananas, Australian grower Frank Sciacca explained to Yahoo! News.
“The red tip is used to show that our bananas are grown using the ecoganic farming method,” he said.
“We wanted to get people asking the question, what is the red tip all about? So we chose the red food-grade wax instead of stickers because it is not only unique and stands out, it is also sustainable – which is what ecoganic farming is all about.”
Shoppers can find the bananas at Coles, Woolworths and other leading Australian supermarkets – and they have been available in grocery stores in some countries since 2009.
Mr Sciacca and his wife, Dianne, developed ecoganic farming 24 years ago, in 1998, in a bid to “farm with nature”.
“We developed this regenerative farming approach because we wanted to work with nature to repair the natural ecosystem,” Mr Sciacca said.
“Unlike organic farming, the ecoganic method does not use any fertilizers or pesticides – natural or chemical – and instead works with nature’s creatures to grow bananas that taste as nature intended while having a positive impact on the environment, by helping to repair the damage done by conventional farming methods.”
While traditional farming employs methods that can affect soil and kill insects – negatively impacting birds, larger wildlife and waterways – the ecoganic method aims to have zero impact on its surrounds.
“When you see the red wax tip on bananas, you can know that they have been farmed in harmony with nature,” Mr Sciacca told the DailyMail.
“Nature has developed over hundreds of thousands of years to keep things in balance.
“Rather than rely on chemicals, we choose to harness everything nature gives us to grow our bananas slowly and with respect.
“This respect shows up in the product and you can taste the difference.”