The international day of the banana

20 years of FAIRTRADE banana in Austria

20-Apr-2022 - Austria

This is because fair trade bananas were first sold in supermarkets in Austria in 2002. "Since then, almost 300,000 tons of the yellow fruit have been sold in this country and the FAIRTRADE banana has developed from a niche product to a mainstream fruit with a market share of about 28 percent," says Hartwig Kirner, managing director of FAIRTRADE Austria. The organic share here is about 95 percent.

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In the current Südwind seal comparison, FAIRTRADE is given high credibility, partly because stakeholders and producer organizations are involved in important decision-making processes. "As consumers, we can make a difference by shopping consciously. Reaching for certified organic bananas already makes a difference," says Gudrun Glocker, fair food expert at Südwind. The importance of fair trade for long-term prospects and stable incomes is particularly evident in the current economic crisis.

Crisis causes costs to rise

For months, smallholder families and plantations have been struggling with falling banana prices and rising costs for packaging and transport. The pandemic alone has driven up freight costs for bananas by 60 percent. In addition, the economic impact of climate change is becoming more tangible. "To secure tomorrow's production, we need to invest in climate adaptation today," stresses Silvia Campos, banana product manager at Fairtrade International. This can only be done if smallholder cooperatives and plantations have more resources at their disposal.

For example, the minimum price for FAIRTRADE bananas has been increased by an average of 8 percent since the beginning of the year. A new basic wage was also introduced as early as summer 2021, giving plantation workers up to 15 percent more pay. Measures that are important, but need to be strengthened in total. "The current cost spiral must not become a downward pull. Even after 20 years, it is more important than ever to continue to pay attention to the conscious consumption of FAIRTRADE bananas, whether in private purchases at the supermarket, at the workplace or in the catering trade," Kirner therefore calls for social responsibility.

Note: This article has been translated using a computer system without human intervention. LUMITOS offers these automatic translations to present a wider range of current news. Since this article has been translated with automatic translation, it is possible that it contains errors in vocabulary, syntax or grammar. The original article in German can be found here.

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