Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo is an important zone of secondary diversification of plantains (Musa AAB) and East African Highland bananas (Musa AAA-EA). Adequate knowledge on existing cultivar diversity is lacking, yet knowledge of Musa genetic diversity and the geographical spread of banana and plantain cultivars in DR Congo will provide valuable information to breeders and taxonomists. In-depth knowledge of current cultivar diversity and the level of genetic erosion are urgently needed to formulate strategies for the conservation of cultivars with good/promising marketing or breeding qualities .
“On-farm Musa Germplasm Diversity Status across Different Agro-ecologies in the North and South Kivu Provinces of Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo”, a presentation given last week by Guy Blomme, Bioversity International, at the International Horticultural Congress 2014 in Brisbane provides information on the status of the current research. You can also learn more on Plantain diversity in DRC by visiting the Promusa webiste here.