Our certified organic, fair trade bananas are some of the most special bananas on Earth. Grown by two different farming co-operatives, one in Northern Peru and the other right across the border in Southern Ecuador, these bananas are farmed by people who own their own land, grow their own crops, and keep their own profits. Acting as a collective, each of the growers tends one to five acres of banana plants and shares harvesting, packaging, shipping and marketing with their community. It is a perfect example of how we support farmers just like ourselves from far away. This past fall, our head buyer and product manager Brody journeyed to Peru to visit these growers and check-in on how they are doing. We shared our story at a fair trade conference and toured the farms and facilities of several growers we support, ranging from bananas, to avocados, to mangoes. <a href="/media/original_images/banana_dudes.jpg"><img class="aligncenter wp-image-4691 size-full" src="/media/original_images/banana_dudes.jpg" alt="banana_dudes" width="600" height="450" /></a> Every few weeks, a sea container of these special bananas arrives in Vancouver. The full skids are shipped to us by truck on Saturdays and we receive them in batches of <strong>6,480 pounds</strong> a week. These bananas arrive green in special sealed bags. Our team here cuts the bags open and kicks off the ripening process for you. We have a purpose-built “banana room” at our food hub in Edmonton that keeps the fruit at exactly the right humidity and temperature to maximize quality. We ripen our bananas naturally with no artificial gassing or additives. <strong>Got Green Bananas?</strong> It takes about seven days for a green banana to reach its full sugar levels naturally. That is four days longer than artificially ripened fruit. A perfect banana is yellow in the middle section with a tiny bit of green at the tips and stem. We call this stage 4. The ripening process converts the starch in the green bananas to sugar in the yellow bananas – that is what makes them taste so good!  However, often an organic banana will not turn yellow when it ripens, check for softness on the tips as well. For some simple instructions on how to ripen your organic bananas - take a look <strong><a href="https://blog.theorganicbox.ca/banana-magic/" target="_blank">here</a></strong>. The next time you enjoy one of our very special bananas, remember the journey it made from a small banana farm in South America to your kitchen in Northern Alberta.  If you ever have any questions about our bananas, how to ripen them at home, or if you would like to buy a whole 40 pound box of bakery grade, please get in touch. We love our bananas! All the best, Danny Co-Founder