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Fairtrade advocates for improved terms of trade for often marginalized growers that lose out in the mainstream market, supporting farmer communities with a stable income and beyond this, a Fairtrade Premium that is invested into community projects that enables the community to thrive. When you buy All Good Bananas and you see the Fairtrade Mark, you know that they were grown by small-scale farmers that are given a hand up, not a hand out.
How are growers protected?
“I didn’t have money to pay the workers, always running my life and my company in to debt, borrowing money to get ahead all the time.” She was running in circles, only just managing to pay her debts back when the market was good before finding herself again borrowing more and more money as the price per box steadily fell.”, Norma says.
The Fairtrade Minimum protects growers against these fluctuating prices. It’s a set price every year at or above the market price that the growers get paid, no matter the market conditions. This means that the growers can save and plan for the future, their family and their community.
Banana growing on large-scale plantations uses aggressive agro-chemicals that have been linked to respiratory issues, birth defects and cancer. Fairtrade bans more than * (waiting on latest # from Pravin) harmful chemicals often used in large banana farms. They also encourage education around sustainable growing practices like crop rotation to protect the land for generations to come.
How are growers empowered?
Your choice to pick up a bunch of All Good Bananas has impacted the growers in many ways, through the Fairtrade Premium investment. Everyone in the co-operative has access to 24-hour free medical care, children receive yearly school packs, and investment into their schools (including new playgrounds!).
Growers are also encouraged and educated to strengthen their voice in the supply chain, business development through investment in education and tools for export, like forklifts and accounting programmes. These are often small but essential contributions that can equalize growers in the mainstream market, against conventional growers.
Research into sustainable growing methods is also another way El Guabo has spent their Fairtrade Premium in the last year. This included support for all farmers to improve the quality of land by increasing the organic matter in the soils, support to convert to organic production, and testing into natural alternatives to control pests.
We think Norma put it just right: “I have found a family where everyone loves and respects each other inside the association”
What does it mean to me?
Bananas are one of the most popular items in our basket, and every bunch makes a difference. By choosing All Good Bananas, you can continue to support our small farmers in El Guabo just like we would help our neighbours.