Bananas are not only packed with vital nutrients for our health (they contain lots of vitamin B6, manganese, vitamin C, potassium, dietary fiber, and potassium), they’re also extremely versatile in breakfasts, snacks, and desserts (my banana muffins count as all three).
Not all bananas are created equal.
While few things could seem less harmless than a banana – the companies, plantations, and farming practices we support when we buy bananas makes a huge difference. The majority of bananas are grown on large plantations owned by large multinational corporations. These plantations are home to tons of human rights abuses, including child labour, union suppression, physical violence, unpaid overtime, and poor living conditions (Dole, Del Monte, and Chiquita are all guilty of refusing to take responsibility for the conditions of their plantations).
There are also implications to buying non-organic bananas. Even though bananas have a peel, chemicals used in conventional banana plantations leach into the soil and wind up in the fruit. Not only is this worse for our health and the planet, but plantation workers are exposed to large doses of these agrochemicals, often without protective equipment.
Opt for organic, fair-trade bananas.
Buying fair trade matters – it protects the people who grow and harvest our food from human rights violations and ensures they earn fair wages. Also choose organic bananas to protect workers, protect our planet, and limit your own exposure to pesticides. Look for third-party certifications where an independent organization has deemed your bananas safe!
Image: Ethical Consumer