Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

How Bananas Can Improve Lives

 

 

Little did you know that slicing a banana into your morning cereal or smoothie could help make the world a better place. Anytime you see the Whole Trade® Guarantee on an item, it means that the product meets specific key criteria:

1. Meet our strict product Quality Standards
2. Provide more money to producers
3. Ensure better wages and working conditions for workers
4. Care for the environment
5. Donate 1% of sales to Whole Planet Foundation®

In Ecuador, Peru, Costa Rica and Colombia, our Whole Trade® Guarantee means a “social premium” is paid when Whole Foods Market® purchases bananas from certified Whole Trade partner farms. This “social premium” supports social-improvement projects in the worker communities including schools and daycare for worker families, bicycles to help kids get to school, water and electricity access and more.

One of these producer projects is EARTH University in Costa Rica, where our Whole Trade Bananas are grown. Located in Guácimo, Limón, Costa Rica, EARTH is a private, international, non-profit university dedicated to education in the field of agricultural sciences and the rational use of natural resources. The University aims to contribute to sustainable development around the world with an emphasis on Latin America and the Caribbean, a region known for its biological and cultural diversity, and also for being threatened by social disparities and inappropriate natural resource management.

The social premium paid on Whole Trade bananas provides scholarships to students earning a degree in agricultural sciences and natural resources management. EARTH cultivates leaders who will contribute to the sustainable development of their home countries and construct a prosperous and just society.

I am applying what I have learned from EARTH to contribute for real change in my country [by] empowering small producers. Haiti doesn’t only need humanitarian help, but also we have to teach people how to make business [and] to create jobs. — Pierre Paul Audate, Haiti, EARTH University graduate

The positive impact of these projects in developing countries is incredible and we are so proud to support the folks at EARTH University in their efforts. If you’d like to stay updated on EARTH University projects and programs, subscribe to EARTH's quarterly newsletter.

Also, from now until the end of October, we’re giving you another way to show your support for this program, for the Whole Trade Guarantee and for the

 farmers and workers who benefit. When you sign up to receive Whole Foods Market’s email newsletters we’ll donate $1 to your choice of three producer projects (one of which is the EARTH University). Our goal is to raise $20K so if you don’t already receive our emails, sign up and tell your friends too.

Do you look for the Whole Trade guarantee when you shop? Let us know why in the comments below.