The Terrifying Truth About Bananas


Here at SciShow HQ we have a little food area for the employees – Sometimes there are donuts. Sometimes there are nuts. Sometimes dried mango. But the one thing that never sticks around and is gone as soon as we can buy it is the wonderful, beautiful, noble banana. Unfortunately for us, they may not be around forever. [Intro Music] First, the good: bananas are healthy,
packed with nutrition and energy, they fit in your hand and give nice little
cues when they’re perfectly ripe, and are easy to peel and eat; shocking statistic,
the banana is Wal-mart’s number one selling item.
Not the potato chip, not Coca-Cola, not Fifty Shades of Grey, bananas. They
appear to be so perfect for human consumption that Kirk Cameron attempted
to use them to prove the existence of God. Of course this banana was not created by
God, or really even nature. Bananas, at least the ones that you see at the store, were created by people. Don’t get me
wrong, there are wild banana plants – lots of them – they’re native to South and
Southeast Asia, and there are dozens of species and
thousands of varieties. They’re just not the ones we eat. Some
those species, as you might suspect, have seeds, ’cause that’s what fruits
are, they’re fleshy bodies containing seeds. So you might wonder, why have you never
eaten a banana seed? Well, you have… kinda. In cultivated bananas the
seeds have pretty much stopped existing. If you look closely you can see tiny black specks. Those are all that’s
left, and they’re not fertile seeds. If you
plant them, nothing grows. Today’s bananas are sterile mutants. I’m
not trying to be mean, that’s just the truth. Unless you were alive in the 1960’s (hats off to all those older SciShow viewers out there) every banana you
have ever eaten was pretty much genetically identical. This is a Cavendish, the virtually seedless
variety that we all eat today, but it wasn’t always our banana of choice. Until the
1960s, everyone was eating the same banana, it
was just a different banana – the Gros Michel, a bigger, sweeter fruit
with thicker skin. You might notice that banana flavored things don’t really
taste like bananas. Well they do – they taste like the Gros Michel. The
genetic monotony of the Gros Michel crop was its undoing. A fungicide
resistant pathogen called the Panama disease began
infecting Gros Michel crop. By the time growers understood how
vulnerable their crops were, the Gros Michel variety was all but extinct. The entire banana industry had to be
retooled for the Cavendish. Since they’re seedless, the only way to reproduce them
is to transplant part of the plant stem, and for the last 50 years we’ve been
good with the Cavendish, ’cause it’s more resistant to the Panama
disease. However somewhat terrifyingly a strain of Panama disease that affects
the Cavendish strain that we all eat has been identified. A global monoculture of genetically
identical individuals is a beautiful sight to a pathogen. The fungus only has to figure out how to
infect and destroy a single individual, and suddenly there is no diversity to
stop it, or even slow it down. That’s led to a lot
of scientists worrying about or even predicting the outright demise of the
Cavendish. This wonderful most popular of fruits might
completely cease existence. The good news is we now have a much better
understanding of genetics, epidemics, fungi, and pathology.
Scientists and growers have already taken steps to protect the Cavendish. Some growers are creating genetically
different bananas that might replace the Cavendish crop if it fails, while
scientists are attempting to genetically engineer Cavendish plants with immunity
to Panama disease. Plus we learned a lot from the Gros
Michel debacle. Infected fields are quickly being destroyed and new crops are
grown from pathogen-free lab-grown plant stock. So thanks to the people who work
tirelessly to grow and harvest bananas and bring them to us so that we can offer them inexpensively
to our employees, and thanks to the growers and scientists working
tirelessly to make sure that they don’t go the way of the Gros Michel. Thanks for watching this episode of SciShow, if
you have any questions, comments or suggestions for us, you can find us on
Facebook, Twitter or in the comments below, and if you want to
continue getting smarter this year at SciShow, you can go to YouTube.com/SciShow and subscribe. [banana eating noises] [music]

Comments 73

  • 🍌 🍌☠️🙊

  • Bananas are from cuttings. Eventually the current plant will probably be gone in 20 or 30 years.

  • No?” I’m 6-

  • I went bananas watching this video

  • I love eating banana radiation

  • It is not good when people talk too quick. As an aging person, it is hard to keep up with what you are saying.

  • scary. i wonder if they still yellow

  • Why don't the scientists engineer straight bananas they would be easier to pack getting more in a box just like the cube watermelons in Japan . Cheers from Down Under in Australia

  • Terrifying truth about bananas? gtfoh with this fear mongering bs.
    Think II'll have a banana split

  • Bananas are cheap and they have a short shelf life. I don't see how they are able to sell them so cheap.

  • 2019. I have Banana Trees from Walmart. So many pups pop up.

  • Banana farm is full of evil spirits

  • You mean genetically adapted by people, we can’t even create an idea never mind life

  • Youtube brought me here

  • Oh yes the same old BS. This is bad that is bad …Guess what fools LIFE CAUSES DEATH SO YES EVERYONE OF YOU ARE GOING TO DIE. BY ONE WAY OR ANOTHER SO GROW UP AND FACE FACTS AND EATING WHATEVER YOU WANT IS PERFECTLY FINE AND ACTUALLY HEALTHY
    JUST THESE TOFU CHOMPERS AND NATURE IDIOTS ARE WHAT'S CAUSING ALL OF THIS ROT GUT CRAP
    YOU HAVE ONE LIFE YOU'RE TIME ON EARTH IS SET BY YOU'RE DNA UNLESS YOU GET INTO A N ACCIDENT OR SOMEONE SHOOTS YOU OR SOME OTHER AIILME NT EFFECTS YOU'RE HEALTH GROW UP AND MOVE ON …. LOVE WHAT TIME YOU HAVE AS YOU NEVER KNOW WHEN DEATH CALLS ON YOU !

  • Great, Boss.

  • Banana grows suckers , off shoot from the mother plant.

  • Will this be on the test?

  • Inform the monkeys quick…

  • On my farm we harvest about 2 metric tons every 3-4 weeks. Here they are Identified as
    "creole" as opposed to the "export" variety. Ours have a very strong banana flavor, the only thing we do in the way of treatment, is put a little chicken manure around them.

  • You are annoying

  • The banana is not a fruit. It is the largest of the herbs. Look it up if you don't believe me

  • Why are there dislikes on a video about bananas? Answer: because the junk-science promoter of this channel is master click-baiter !! That's why. There is nothing terrifying about bananas !! Period. In this video.. here's the story: one specific popular variety of bananas in 1960s was affected by pathogen and wiped out from most plantations. No big deal- we have many other varieties and NEW popular seedless tasty variety has taken it's place. That the end of the story. No fake click-bait bs and no needless scaremongering. So: video is cheap click bait and fake scaremongering – dislike !!

  • Less hand waving, please. The hand waving detracts from your message.

  • If bananas have radioactively enriched potassium, once this enriched potassium substitutes bioavailable potassium, poof! Hipokalemia. It is characterized by affecting intestine peristaltic movements, so it is s way to tell people they are anal.

  • I'm fluent in all English, but this bugger's heavy American accent is impossible to comprehend.

  • I'm an Asian… We don't commercially grow banana here at least for our family… We have 5 varieties of bananas in our own garden … They r not even gmo… This is going for more than 50 years collecting the saplings from those old tress that we had ..

  • my grandpa grows another traditional variety and is really tasteful too

  • Terrifying ? snow flakes,

  • So… man created the banana? How dumb can you get? For all I know is that God created everything in this universe… including the dumb ones like you… FYI… man may have propagated the banana plants but sure as the sun to come out after storm, only God can create life and plants and all living things.

  • Bananas are a good example of why evolution is bullshirt. Our bananas are only man made mutants and the original ones are still there.

  • ‏i guess this what will happen to cannabis in hundred years from now

  • DAMN son………slow down !!!!!!!!!!!! ………. switch to de-caff……. tell your Dr. to change the type of meds. you take. I enjoy your show, but would like it a lot better if I could understand it all.

  • I have noticed that withen the past 10 years all fruits do not taste good like they used to!! I recently bought Fuji apples that looked good but had a moldy taste!! I remember Fuji apples having a yummy cotton candy flavor and i never detected the mold flavor a few years back. I have noticed that bananas are having the same moldy taste as the apples do and i am sad about this. I have also bought peaches and plums that never turn ripe instead they turn to dried out mealy mush!! A CRAZY THING happened to my sister that envolves a watermelon!! In the beginning of Summer my sister bought a watermelon and it was sitting on there island in the kitchen. Low & behold the watermelon exploded and went everywhere!!! She said it had a weird smell too. I really wonder if the composition of fruits are being altered by chemtrails being sprayed into the air and affecting our soil all over our earth!! I know something has changed and i miss how delicious fruit used to be!! Sometimes i do find great tasting fruit but its hit or miss these days!! The last bananas i got had a very dried out texture along with the mold taste 😝!

  • Well…that's just Bananas! Who would of thunk it! Lol!

  • The other scary truth about bananas are their fuel for colonialism, war, subjugation, mass murder, poverty, and overall misery to the countries that were forced to grow them through blood thanks to fruit companies like United Fruit which is now known as Chiquita

  • This guy try’s to sound clever but no he just sounds irritating

  • The best use 4 bananas is Oriental girls learning how to give head, on the other hand cucumbers are best for American girls who want to learn how to give head, & for Jewish girls who want to learn how to give head, they usually try carrots with the skin still on.

  • Bananas make me sick to my stomach.

  • and still made the classic mistake of peeling it from the wrong end .

  • Bananas: all the sugar of candy with none of the guilt.
    I wouldn't touch one with a ten foot (3 metre 🙄🙄🙄🙄) pole!

  • Was the presenter a singer in the Proclaimers? And he talks to fast.

  • Hybrids are the killer nobody suspects .
    Always try to grow what you can to eat and use heirloom 🙏. These are of GOD ALMIGHTY

  • It's Genetically Modified Food. Nowadays its called CRISPR Modification which uses specialized bacteria that actually do the genetic modification for us. We can now splice fish genes into tomatoes so that they can withstand the cold better like fish. We are committing abomination against this earth and we have no idea that we are destroying the very balance of our lives through our grimy hands and our arrogant hearts that think we have the understanding to genetically modify and therefore we are justified to do it, when we don't understand near 1% of the consequences of our actions. It's one of the reasons the end of the world is coming as stated here,

    The nations raged, but your wrath came, and the time for the dead to be judged, and for rewarding your servants, the prophets and saints, and those who fear your name, both small and great, and for destroying the destroyers of the earth. ~Revelations 11:18

  • I knew something was wrong with the bananas in days when I was a kid they were good and he is right they had seeds in them now they don't I used to like bananas but now I'll be lucky if I eat bananas a month

  • That they are a herb

  • I've gotten used to the lesser flavour of cavendish bananas but the ones I ate as a kid growing up in the 1960s tasted so much better. I'd disagree with Hank about banana flavoured lollies tasting like bananas tasted then though. They taste like chemicals and not like any banana I've ever eaten. I hated artificial banana flavoured lollies even back in the 60s – they were putrid then and they're putrid now and even as a sugar loving kid I would choose a banana over those chemical flavoured monstrosities.

  • Are they healthy? Are they really good for humans if they are genetically altered?

  • Man created How??? How does man create any living thing here on earth?

  • That's insane you can't even get a real banana

  • This why bananas make me sick 😷

  • I like them in pajamas

  • I have banana seeds and they are as big as peas. I'm gonna plant them when I go back home to El Salvador

  • Genetics will save the banana, but it won't save us.

  • Here in Borneo we have varieties of bananas: fat, pluffy, long, short, small, big, sweet, not so sweet.

  • Tomatos are frakkin' horrible too. There's no natural sweetness when they ripen, and when they get past the peak, they go sour. Many years ago I grew an heirloom small cherry variety that was orange when ripe, and were like tomato-flavored sugarcubes. Made an unbelievable Habanero ketchup with them. Grew some Brandywines, too, best flavor of any variety.

  • There are so many types of bananas in the Philippines. We even have banana ketchup.

  • Best of them are the small sized ones with seeds in them. Fry it with flavored flour 👍

  • Monsanto has rigged the crops so that NONE OF THEM CAN BE GROWN FROM THEIR SEEDS! YOU HAVE TO USE CHEMICALS TO JUMPSTART THE GROWING PROCESS. MONSANTO CHEMICALS. ASK ANY FARMER.

  • AH yes… this brings me back.. to when the Greens were actually good at youtube
    numerous problems with the information tho

  • Hank is the best presenter ever!

  • in the Philippines, we have different kinds of bananas too. And i still remember those with seeds which are really sweet. We have big green ones, small yellow brown dotted ones, medium size yellow ones, long round red ones, tiny yellows, the gardava for cooking which also has 2 kinds , and lately the cavendish. I prefer the native bananas as always, more sweet more taste.

  • 50 shades of female hypocrisy

  • 'I'm not trying to be mean' …. I'm still laughing! SO sweet!

  • takes him 2 minutes and 40 seconds to get to the point .

  • Mango is better

  • Sounds just like John Mulaney…

  • Ever tried banana chips?
    Those are damn good.

  • Fact: Walmart's bananas taste like crap and have remnants of seed in them(?) that feel like you've eaten a bug…maybe i have, though. They never seem to ripen and are more starchy than what other stores sell.

  • Are organic bananas organic?

  • Bring back the Gro Michel!

  • elton john doesn't eat bananas because he can't find the zippers.

  • Allergic

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