BUJUMBURA September 30th (ABP) – Banana is a crop that has many varieties, including cooking varieties, dessert varieties, juice varieties and plantains, a researcher on banana at the Institute of Agronomic Sciences of Burundi (ISABU), Mr. Celestin Niyongere, told a check by ABP in an interview he gave her on Thursday September 26, 2019.

Mr. Niyongere pointed out that there are two types of cooking banana on the culinary side. The first is cooked when the fruit is green and is nutritionally a basic source of starch similar to potato. This type of banana can be conditioned to become ripe and be consumed as a dessert banana.

The second type of cooking banana is the one that has an unpleasant taste when it is raw and recommends to cook it before consumption. These are the real plantains.

He added that for both dessert bananas and plantains, their chemical composition varies depending on whether the fruit is fresh, ripe or dried. The researcher meant that banana and plantain bring some nutritional elements to the consumers.

Mr. Niyongere also pointed out that although they play a big role in food, they are also used in many other fields. The leaves can be used as packaging, umbrellas, dishes and as clothing during customary or ritual ceremonies. They can also be used as precarious roofing. He also indicated that dried leaf sheaths are used in the manufacture of clothing, baskets, ropes, hats and in handicraft.

The banana researcher also said that bananas and plantains are used by farmers in rural areas to relieve not only humans of certain diseases but also certain animals. He cited that fresh banana or plantain skin relieves pain when applied to the problem area. When heated on embers, it is used to massage the woman’s pelvis after delivery.

Mr. Niyongere finally reported that when the peel of the ripe fruit is sun-dried and burned with fire to collect the ash, it is used for the treatment of poison, constipation and high blood pressure. Banana sap collected from the pseudo-stem or leaf sheath is applied to wounds as first aid in the south-east of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

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