Pile of green bananas

Climate change is killing bananas

Plant diseases, changing weather patterns, soil depletion and water shortages are all affecting bananas and the people that grow them.

What’s make it worse? Low prices in countries like the US mean that banana farms don’t have the resources they need to protect workers or the environment.

Illustration of earth featuring North and South America

Most bananas in the US are grown in Latin America and the Caribbean.

banana tree illustration

Though they travel thousands of miles, bananas are harvested only 4 weeks before they are eaten in the US.

Illustration of a parent and child shopping for bananas.

The average American eats 27 pounds of bananas per year - that's 90 bananas!

Yellow bananas with the blue and green Fairtrade Mark

No such thing as a cheap product

Even though bananas travel thousands of miles, they cost less than apples that are grown in the US. How is that possible? Unfortunately, there is no such thing as a cheap product. Someone, somewhere is paying for it. In the case of conventional (non-Fairtrade and non-organic) bananas, this often means that banana workers are receive poverty-level wages and are exposed to health & safety risks.

The climate crisis is already part of the every day life on banana farms. From changing weather patterns to soil depletion and water shortages to worsening plant diseases, these additional costs are not being accounted for in US supermarkets. Something has to give.

Hundreds of Coliman banana workers in Mexico have dignified living conditions. Fairtrade and sustainable agriculture practices have benefited both the environment and local communities.

Fairtrade partner, Coliman

Fairtrade is part of the solution

Though Fairtrade alone won’t solve the climate crisis, we have been fighting for a better deal and better working conditions alongside banana workers for years through:

Thanks to the Fairtrade Premium, the cooperative has been able to invest in a new water supply system. This is important, because climate change will reduce water in a few years' time. This new system gives hope for the future. 

Elisandre, Vice President of a Fairtrade certified banana cooperative in Peru

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