You can eat this 'incredible' banana without peeling

05:42 PM | 8 Jan, 2018
You can eat this 'incredible' banana without peeling
OKAYAMA - Japanese farmers have used a special DNA method to create a remarkable version of the banana with a totally edible skin.

The technique recreates conditions present at the end of the ice age around 20,000 years ago when plants would emerge from harsh winter temperatures to grow.

The Mongee Banana is grown by D&T Farm in Japan, where it is sold on the fruit counter of department stores.

The first crop of the plant, which is organically grown and Genetically modified organism (GMO) free, successfully emerged in November.

Bananas are typically grown in tropical climates, but Mongee are cultivated using a 'Freeze Thaw Awakening' method that draws on the fruit's ancient past.

D&T Farm recreated these conditions by freezing Banana saplings to -60°C, planting them again once thawed. This method encourages them to grow rapidly, even in Japan's relatively cool climate.

The resulting Mongee bananas are sweeter than their tropical relatives, containing 24.8g of sugar compared to an average 18.3g in a regular banana.

Japan imports 99 percent of its bananas, so this homegrown variety is somewhat of a luxury, making up part of the one percent on the island.

This is reflected in the fruit's name, pronounced mon-gay in the local dialect, which is Okayama slang for 'incredible'.

In a written statement on its website, a spokesman for D&T Farm said: 'Banana peel is an excellent ingredient that can contain vitamin B6 and magnesium related to the synthesis of serotonin.