Going Bananas!

By Vivek Prasad, INN, Kerla, @infodeaofficial;

The National Banana Festival which ended recently at the Vellayani Temple ground in Kalliyoor Panchayat at Trivandrum district, Kerala has turned to out to be a huge hit with people from across Kerala and even from the Kanyakumari district of Tamilnadu thronging the event.

The visitors also included families, foreign nationals, researchers, scientists and the local farmers and most importantly youth in large numbers.

The five day exhibition showcased products that could help housewives and small entrepreneurs apart from the youth to tap the income-generation potential that the banana plant offers.

For example, products like banana wine, banana pickles made from the core of the banana plant and flower, footwear made out of banana fibre, doormats and mobile pouches found many takers among the visitors.


The exhibition was organized by Centre for Innovation in Science and Social action (CISSA) in partnership with Kalliyoor gramapanchayat and a host of national and state organisations.


According to a release from CISSA, the expo was aimed at exploring the profit earning possibilities of banana and its value added products. The release further says that Banana fibre is becoming a global sensation, however India is yet to tap its true potential.


Another highlight of the festival was the 101 recipes from banana. A feast with 20 side dishes cooked exclusively using banana and plantain products was another highlight at the venue. Traditional dishes like theeyal, elissery and pickles are all made with different parts of the plantain. Snacks such as banana vada, banana cakes and banana unniyappam sold like hot cakes with many from north India savoring the dishes.


The five-day extravaganza also witnessed a buyer-seller meet, training programmes, documentary screenings, photography contest etc. The festival also showcased a national seminar, exhibition, training programmes, farmers’ meet and a host of other activities.


School and college students from the city thronged the venue and showed keen interest to take up banana cultivation and help in generating employment opportunities to the unemployed lot, the parents accompanying these students were also astonished at the wide array of value added products on display and for once did not mind the indulgence of their wards in consuming the tasty and healthy snacks…

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