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USA Today reports this morning that "fair trade" initiatives, which look to assure shoppers that farmers get a living-wage price for their products - are finding their way into supermarket produce departments

Wild Oats Markets reportedly will begin selling bananas that are independently certified as Fair Trade. This is similar to Wild Oats' decision to sell fair trade coffee…though it will not charge a premium for bananas certified as fair trade. Wild Oats' fair trade coffee generally costs as much as 10 percent more than its regular coffee.

"Behind the move is TransFair USA, an independent, third-party certifier of products as Fair Trade," the paper reports. In addition to talking with other grocers about bananas, "TransFair also hopes to broaden its certification program to other tropical fruits, including pineapples and mangos."

"We should not be profiting off someone else's hard work," Wild Oats CEO Perry Odak told the paper. "People who provide our food should get a fair, living wage."
KC's View:
Reports say that this is a growing and vibrant niche…and a way for many retailers to differentiate themselves.