Re: New York/New Jersey bananas

Michael Mang <mnmang@...>

Proper storage temperature for green bananas is 56-58 degrees F, according
to the USDA. At that temperature, the fruit has an average storage life of
1-4 weeks. Compare this to grapes, with an average storage life of 50-100
days, or apples, with a storage life up to 6 months.

The transit time from the plantation in Central America, to the dock in New
York, in the 1940's and 1950's, could be between 1 and 2 weeks. Once at the
dock, the clock is ticking to get the fruit loaded onto a car and moved out,
to make sure the produce arrives in good condition.

As Andy points out, ripening bananas also produce ethylene gas, which
further speeds up the ripening process. Other than kiwifruit, a
non-steam-era product introduction, bananas are the only ethylene producer
which is also ethylene sensitive. Therefore, even though the ripening
process is slowed by cooling, it is not stopped, and the railroads needed to
get that commodity to it's intended destination. These were also years
before modified atmosphere packaging, refrigerated containers, and the
development of new varieties of fruits that can stand longer shipping times.

Michael Mang

-----Original Message-----
From: Andy Carlson [mailto:midcentury@...]
Sent: Friday, December 05, 2003 3:46 PM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: Re: [STMFC] New York/New Jersey bananas

Not all that simple.... Green bananas (never quite
sure when to stop the anananan) will stay green after
picked for awhile, but they won't stay green
indefinately. They will either ripen (helped along
with Propylene gas- the only plant hormone known to
exist as a gas in nature) or if left too chilled, turn
an ugly grey, followed by an even uglier black.
Grocers know not to delay ripening bananas by cooling
them, instead they open the boxes and tear off the
plastic to vent off the Propylene gas, giving another
24 hours or so of ripening delay.
-Andy Carlson "Yes I have no bananas-anybody want a

Larry J. said....
Bananas... (y)ou never cool them again after they
ripen. I have never
seen a green one turn brown except one that is not
going to ripen but
then it has to be above 60 to do that.
So what is the hurry?
Thank you
Larry Jackman

To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:

Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to

Join to automatically receive all group messages.