Sunday, June 3, 2012

iPhone Diaries #451: WTF pineapples

Found these pineapples for sale at $1 each from my local No-Frills supermarket. For a dollar, a pineapple is grown and harvested, sold by the grower to a wholesaler, shipped to North America, sold to a sub-wholesaler, and then sold to the retailer (my supermarket). Along this chain, everyone has to make a profit, from the grower to the retailer. For a dollar each, somebody is sure to have been shortchanged! Most likely the labourer who planted and harvested, as well as the environment for the "efficiencies" that have to be realized. I cannot imagine the size of the carbon footprint for the shipping alone of this fruit from Costa Rica. June 3rd.
from Wikipedia:
"Three quarters of pineapples sold in Europe are grown in Costa Rica, where pineapple production is highly industrialized. Growers typically use 20 kg of pesticides per hectare in each growing cycle, a process that affects soil quality and biodiversity. The pesticides - organophosphates, organochlorines, and hormone disruptors - have the potential to affect workers' health and can contaminate the local drinking water. Many of these chemicals have potential to be carcinogens and may be related to birth defects. 
Because of commercial pressures, many pineapple workers - 60% of whom are Nicaraguan - in Costa Rica are paid low wages. European supermarkets' price-reduction policies have lowered growers' incomes".
Bitter Fruit: The Truth About Supermarket Pineapple
Mind you, pineapple is an astounding source of Vitamin C and manganese, to mention just a few. 

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