Fairtrade France (Association Max Havelaar) has started a €1 million project funded by the French Development Agency and French supermarket chain Carrefour. Its aim is to support environmentally friendly practices and promote gender equality across organic Fairtrade banana supply chains.
It intends to do this by supporting 11 small farmers’ organizations over a three-year period in the Dominican Republic and Peru. The Dominican Republic is the largest producer of organic bananas worldwide; Peru accounts for around one fifth of global production. In both countries, bananas are predominantly produced by small scale farmers organized into cooperative organizations or associations.
The project should address challenges to the sustainability of organic Fairtrade banana production in both countries, principally to increase the resilience of small producers to climate change, while also promoting women’s empowerment and supporting the younger generation to take over banana farming from the older generation.
According to bananalink.org.uk¸ The Fairtrade/Max Havelaar project aims to guarantee better working and living conditions for growers by securing a minimum price, and is driven in part by the growth of Fairtrade banana sales in France, which have almost doubled in recent years, with 12% of banana sales being Fairtrade. One in three bananas sold by Carrefour in France are Fairtrade certified.