Bananas on Truck

This is Bananas! (Or Maybe it’s Not)

There’s no getting around it, food is expensive these days. We’ve had increases to just about all products in our stores, and now it’s our beloved Equal Exchange bananas’ turn.

On Monday, February 7th, the retail for our conventional and organic bananas increased to $1.09/lb. We wanted to tell you why.

It’s seems crazy to think that bananas will be over a dollar per pound, but is it really? Over the last year many products have increased in price, but bananas have held steady at our stores. So why now? Simply put, it’s just time.

We want to represent the true cost of bananas at our stores, and this increase is in line with packaging, production, and transportation increases.

The most dramatic increase has been to the cost of freight. The further your food travels, the more it costs to get to you, and the banana travels a long way to get to your table. From one of the two Equal Exchange growing regions in Ecuador or Peru, your banana travels over 3,000 miles to reach the Upper Valley.

The Co-op has never been shy about its commitment to paying a fair price—you can find several posts in our Co-op News archives on this topic—and the Equal Exchange banana is something worth supporting.

For each box of bananas we purchase, the Co-op pays a social premium of $1, which goes directly to the small farmer cooperative to reinvest in their community.

So while our wallets may long for the days of cheap bananas, we can rest easy knowing the dollars we’ve spent on Equal Exchange fair trade organic bananas are helping to do good things in the world!

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Sarah Simpson

Sarah works as a Produce Category Manager in the Co-op Merchandising Department. Contact her at ssimpson at coopfoodstore dot com.