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When did you first learn about Fairtrade?
I had always been a supporter of Fair Trade and organisations like Tradeaid but it wasn’t until I looked into bananas did the certified Fairtrade become a business idea.
Tell us the story of how you decided to start All Good and bring the first Fairtrade Bananas to New Zealand
Simon Coley, Matt Morrison (my brother) and I first looked at bringing in Organic Bananas from our neighbours in Samoa. New Zealand used to get all its bananas from the Pacific util the big corporates entered New Zealand and ended this very important trade.
We thought it would be great to try and rebuild this, but without the infrastructure we could not compete. We then shifted to brining in dried Organic Bananas and fresh Fairtrade and Fairtrade Organic Bananas from a co-operative in Ecuador called El Guabo.
As we’re celebrating Fairtrade Fortnight, we are keen to know what does Fairtrade mean to you?
I believe it’s really important to support Fairtrade as it gives consumers an independent verification that the growers are paid a fair price. Whether that's coffee, chocolate or bananas. Often growers in developing nations have been exploited and are not paid a fair price for what they produce. By supporting Fairtrade this allows consumers and growers protection all the way along the supply chain.
When we purchase a bunch of All Good Bananas, how does this directly impact the growers?
By purchasing All Good Bananas you are getting the verification that the growers are being paid a fair price for their crop and they receive a Fairtrade premium. The Cooperative decide together where the premium is spent, this could go towards a school, hospital or new equipment that the community needs. The Fairtrade premium they receive goes towards something that benefits the overall community, rather than just benefiting individuals.
You’ve visited the All Good Banana grower communities in Ecuador several times. What have been some of the long lasting memories from these trips?
Yes we have been very fortunate to visit El Guabo with our trading partner Agrofair. It was amazing to visit our growers and to see the wonderful work they are doing to build on independent robust community. With the Fairtrade premiums they have been able to invest in excellent education, a medical centre and organic regenerative growing systems.
Why should more businesses go Fairtrade? What are the benefits?
Fairtrade is very well recognised, it is one of the top recognised ethical brands worldwide. Consumers already know quite a bit about Fairtrade and often search out products that carry the brand because they feel that it is legitimate. As well, they know the extra money they are paying towards the commodity is going back down the supply chain to those who need it the most, the growers.
Does Fairtrade help gender equality?
Yes, I think it does. Fairtrade supports the education of both boys and girls, as well it ensures there is no exploitation of children. Fairtrade also supports women in business
and encourages them to participate in the Cooperatives decision making. Fairtrade empowers women and ensures that women's voices are heard.
What are some simple switches people can make to purchase more Fairtrade products?
Easy switches include everyday commodities such as tea, coffee, sugar and bananas. They are highly accessible to consumers and it's just a matter of swapping out those products for Fairtrade.
How does Fairtrade help tackle climate change?
Fairtrade has a strong environmental position and they encourage growers to use organic methods that look after the soil and embed carbon into the soil through regenerative agriculture methods. They encourage working with nature rather than against nature and avoid the use of herbicides and pesticides. All of this is crucial to producing healthy food and crops that are good for the environment.
And finally… what is your favourite way to enjoy All Good Bananas?
My everyday treat is organic sourdough toast with nut butter and an All Good Banana squashed on top. Delicious 😋