Aldi price war causing “serious harm” to banana farmers

Farmers are having to bear the full brunt of soaring inflationary costs

Aldi has been criticised for causing “serious harm” to Latin American farmers as it pushes ahead with its price war for the UK’s cheapest bananas.

Farmers are having to bear the full brunt of soaring inflationary costs, local representatives have claimed.

In the race to offer “the cheapest bananas on the market”, Aldi is “setting the price by which the rest of the supermarkets will be guided”, according to representatives of the Latin American banana sector.

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Latin America makes up about 60 per cent of global production.

The calls come with negotiations now underway for next year’s banana supply.

Farmers claim prices have not risen for more than two decades “because supermarkets like Aldi take advantage of the intrinsic nature of the sector”.

This is despite farmers facing soaring costs of raw materials such as cardboard and plastic, as well as investing in new biosecurity measures to protect the fruit from the banana disease TR4.

An Aldi spokesperson said: “We are working hard towards ensuring that everyone in our supply chain is paid a fair price, as well as supporting suppliers that engage and invest in sustainable supply chains.

“We are a member of the World Banana Forum and part of the ‘Cost of Sustainable Production’ Working Group, which focuses on the implementation of living wages. Aldi is also one of the retail representatives in the World Banana Forum’s Observatory that aims to improve transparency of costs along the banana supply chain.”

Big 4 grocer Tesco pledged this week to pay the living wage to banana producers from January 2022.

This will see them earn “enough to meet their family’s basic needs including food, housing, education, healthcare, transport and clothing”.

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