Skip to Content

At Rachelle Béry, you’ll only find one banana variety: the Equifruit banana. And it’s no coincidence! Both organic and fairtrade, these bananas help ensure producers have good working conditions and a fair salary. Let’s peel open the story of this Quebec company and its positive impacts thousands of kilometres down south.

Bananas for the win!

Why did Equifruit choose to focus on importing bananas specifically? “Because, in terms of volume, it’s the most consumed imported fruit in Canada. It accounts for more than 20% of imported fruit, alongside apples, grapes, and others,” explains Equifruit President Jennie Coleman.

The more consumers turn to Fairtrade, organic bananas, the more likely a real change is to occur. “Since acquiring the company in 2013, I noticed that consumers are much more aware of social and environmental issues. Demand for products that are in line with their values, like our bananas, is continually growing,” she notes.

Equifruit now has a dozen employees, as opposed to just one when the company was founded in 2006. “I’m so proud of the progress made by Quebecers over the past few years! People are finally realizing that they have the power to change things just by adding responsible, Fairtrade products to their cart,” says Coleman.

Bananas for the win!

Certifications that lead to action

The different certifications visible on various products can sometimes lead to confusion. Coleman helps us see clearly: “Our bananas are Fairtrade-certified, meaning producers are guaranteed a fair salary and safe working conditions. They are also Ecocert-certified, which assures consumers that they are buying an organic product grown using best practices,” The entire production chain needs to work hard to be able to offer products with these certifications.

Small premiums for big projects

For every case of bananas imported from its partner cooperatives in Peru or Ecuador, Equifruit pays a social premium to be used as funding on different projects. There are so many possibilities! Producers use these funds to improve their infrastructures, offer their community better healthcare, or renovate schools. “In Peru, the coop even planned business training workshops for women. I visited a bakery someone opened after taking these classes. It was wonderful to see these premiums were producing concrete results!” says the President.