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Toronto-based Longo's announced yesterday that it "has become the first grocery retailer in North America to commit to offering only Fairtrade bananas in their 36 stores and through delivery on Grocery Gateway. This is made possible through a partnership with the Canadian company, Equifruit."

“We aim to be the most trusted and relied upon food partner, and that includes setting sustainability precedents,” said Mike Longo, Chief Merchandising Officer at Longo’s, in a prepared statement.  “We’re proud to be the first North American retailer to initiate what is becoming a global purchasing standard for bananas.”

The commitment, Longo's said, means that the company "is ensuring that the farmers and communities where its bananas are sourced are guaranteed a fair and sustainable income and that farmers get financial and technical support to lower their impact on the environment. For Longo’s, a full commitment to Fairtrade bananas comes as the latest in a long line of sustainability initiatives centred around environmental stewardship, responsible sourcing, and healthy communities, including waste diversion, use of renewable energy, and community donations."

KC's View:

The consensus seems to be that selling only fair trade bananas is one way to assure ethical consistency in the supply chain … and it sounds like Longo's also has concluded that the move gives it a differential advantage.  Which is the very definition of a win-win.