Producer Profiles

Bananeras de Urabá - Mi Tierra, Madrigal, Tagua, Cantares...

Bananeras de Urabá is a banana export company located in the tropical northwest region of Colombia and comprised of six Fair Trade Certified™ farms. Founded in 1963, Bananeras de Urabá has experienced many highs and lows due to numerous domestic conflicts and unstable regimes. Since Fair Trade certification in 2005, the association has focused its efforts on developing social and environmental programs for its workers and families. As a result, workers have better access to international markets, educational institutions and sustainable farming methods. Basic necessities such as clean running water and electricity were scarce before, but Fair Trade premiums have now helped workers access more funds to rebuild their homes, send their children to school and save for future investments.


On March 19, 2010, we saw the result of a joint effort between Bananeras de Urabá and banana workers at the Fair Trade Banana Company. The delivery of the first stage of the Rosalba Zapata Cardona Housing Development Project presented a new home for my family and I. This has been the best thing that has happened to me – owning a home really improves my family’s quality of life. Thank you to Bananeras de Urabá and Fair Trade for giving us the possibility of having a decent home. It gives us great satisfaction to know other banana workers will also have this opportunity."  

Hector Oviedo, Madrigal Farm Worker

The results today are very good because they allow me to invest in other ways, such as in our new fast food establishment, a nice dining room set for my family and a bicycle for my eldest daughter to attend school. It has also helped me support my only son that lives in the city of Medellín  

Alex Darío Velásquez Hernández, Bananeras de Uraba

My name is Karen Andrea Garcia Higuita. I am 21 years old and belong to a working class family in the village of New Cologne, Colombia. My father's name is Donisel Garcia. He works in a banana plantation called Solomon which is part of Bananeras de Urabá. Through the Rosalba Cardona Zapata Corporation, I had access to one of my biggest dreams – a scholarship to pursue my university studies. In 2008, I began to study at the Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia in Apartado, in the Public Accounting program. The company paid each semester as I completed them, ultimately investing a great deal of money in my education. This assistance has been invaluable and I am very grateful for the support. I hope I can give back to the community and the company with the knowledge I have gained. The company has been incredibly helpful in my professional development.  

Karen Andrea Garcia Higuita, Scholarship Recipient


Music Program

The organization donated musical instruments to the “Sounds of Peace” youth community program. So far, workers claim the group’s music has reached the ears of 25,000 people through concerts and other activities. They hope to promote community, peace and harmony through music.

Skill Development for Women

In collaboration with SENA, Bananeras de Urabá is training women in an urban development program. Women have learned how to bake bread and cakes in addition to selling fried “empanadas” as a means to generate additional income. The results of this program have led the organization to invest in more training sessions teaching women how to form their own businesses.