Brown Bag vs. Plastic Bag in Banana Ripening

29 Dec.,2021

Bananas are harvested green and then ripen naturally on their own. You can place bananas in kraft paper or plastic bags as needed to speed up the ripening process.


NPK Compound Ftilier With Low Chloride

Banana Cover Bag

Bananas are harvested green and then ripen naturally on their own. You can place bananas in kraft paper or plastic bags as needed to speed up the ripening process. The packaging in which the banana is placed creates its own atmosphere, affecting the ripeness, flavor and color of the fruit. The different stages of banana ripening are indicated by the skin changing from green to yellow to brown, which is considered overripe. The ripeness of bananas is controlled by choosing the right bag.

Plantain Vs. Banana

Understanding the difference between plantains and bananas is key to knowing when they are ripe. Plantains are a member of the banana family, but a larger and longer version of the banana fruit most people are familiar with. The main difference is that plantains have less natural sugar and significantly higher starch content than bananas. This means that plantains are usually cooked before they are eaten, while bananas are most often eaten raw.

Option 1

If you want to eat them within a week, place your green bananas in a sealed plastic bag. A sealed plastic bag acts as an oxygen barrier and delays ripening. Ripe fruit inhales oxygen and releases ethylene, a gas produced by ripening that also helps facilitate the ripening process. Without oxygen, the chemical process of ripening cannot occur. This is why bananas are usually placed in plastic bags at the grocery store.

Option 2

Place your green bananas in an unsealed plastic bag to ripen them at a moderate rate. These bananas are exposed to some oxygen, so the bananas can ripen. However, due to the limited oxygen supply, it will take about five days for the bananas to fully ripen.

Option 3

Ripen green bananas more quickly in brown paper bags. Paper is a material that allows oxygen to pass through but is retained in ethylene, thus promoting ripening of the fruit. Bananas placed in brown bags ripen faster than those placed in plastic bags. Wait about three to four days to allow the fruit to ripen.

Banana Kraft Paper Bag

Banana Kraft Paper Bag

Option 4

Add an apple or an orange to the brown bag to ripen green bananas faster. These fruits will release ethylene, just like ripe bananas, which will cause the banana to ripen faster than when left alone in a paper bag. Use this method if you need bananas that ripen within a day or two.

Do not confuse ripening methods with ways of keeping bananas or plantains from ripening too fast. The release of ethylene gases largely comes from the base of the stems where the banana bunch is connected. You can wrap this part of a banana bunch in plastic cling wrap to trap the gases from being released, thereby slowing down the ripening process.

Option 5

Leave bananas on the counter or in a fruit bowl to ripen in about six days. However, as the bananas ripen, the unlimited supply of oxygen causes the skin to turn from yellow to brown the fastest.


Keep bananas in a warm place and they will ripen more quickly. If you need to slow down the ripening process, store ripe bananas in the refrigerator. Frozen bananas can be stored for up to five months.

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