COSTA Rican banana exports grew 12% in 2003, totaling 99.6 million crates weighing 40.6 pounds (18.4 kilograms) and generating $527 million in revenues, according to the National Banana Corporation (CORBANA).
During 2002, the country exported 89.4 million crates, which generated $465 million.
Last year’s increase was the result of improved climate conditions, according to CORBANA. During 2003, the sector was finally able to recover after facing two straight years of heavy rains and flooding that damaged crops in the eastern province of Limón, which is home to the majority of the country’s banana plantations.
Costa Rica remains the world’s second-largest exporter of bananas, trailing Ecuador, which last year exported 216.2 million crates. The country is followed closely by the Philippines, which exported 94 million crates.
According to the Foreign Trade Promotion Office (PROCOMER), banana exports constituted 8.85% of total Costa Rican exports in 2003. Bananas are the country’s largest agricultural export, followed by pineapples and coffee.