Bananas: Going, going ... gone?

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Behold, the humble banana. It's not as simple as you think. Its tree is not a tree. Its fruit is a giant berry — in fact, it's the world's largest herb.

The banana is the planet's biggest fruit crop, but most can't reproduce without human intervention. Until 1876, almost no one in North America had ever seen a banana. Now, if you're 40 years old, you've probably eaten ten thousand. Whole governments have risen and fallen on the banana boat trade.

Now, the banana itself is in huge trouble. The fruit on your corn flakes may not survive.

Up next, On Point: Yes, we may have no bananas.Guests:

Dan Koeppel, journalist and contribuiting editor at National Geographic Adventure Magazine and author of "Banana: The Fate of the Fruit That Changed the World."

Adolfo Martinez, director of the Honduran Foundation for Agricultural Investigation.

This program aired on January 11, 2008.


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