Going bananas: the search for origin markers of bananas

We are currently looking for a thesis or internship student for at least 5 months who is interested in searching for analytical markers in bananas which will tell more about the origin of the bananas. Sustainable production of bananas is linked to particular places in the world. In this project we would like to find relevant markers for the origin of the bananas, and eventually correlate the data with soil and climate factors in order to understand their relevance and to predict compositions of bananas in other places in the future.


The study would include a brief literature review, selection of relevant markers, selection and adjustment of the appropriate analytical techniques, experimental design, analyses, multivariate data analysis, report and presentation. A large range of analytical techniques, including GC, LC, ICP-MS, PTR-MS, IR-MS, NMR, NIRS, Raman spectroscopy, etc. are available. The work will be in collaboration with another student who will be focusing on the soil and climate factors. Bananas from specific places will be collected in South America in another running project.


If you are interested, please contact Prof. Saskia van Ruth.