Coliman expects production boost

Coliman, a Hermosillo, Mexico-based banana grower-shipper, anticipates a major increase in its organic banana production, said spokeswoman Audee Rios Canobio.

The firm’s output should nearly double by the end of 2016 or early 2017, she said. Europe and New Zealand are among the destinations for Coliman’s organic bananas, as well as North America.

Coliman was certified by Fairtrade International to produce and export organic bananas in December.

The company also has expanded its Coliman Pacific Corp. office in Nogales, Ariz. Year-to-date sales in Nogales have increased by 50%, she said.

The firm, which has more than 50 years in the industry, is going through a period of “intense innovation,” Canobio said. Since 2012, demand for the company’s bananas has increased significantly in Europe, she said.


Chiquita moving HQ to Florida

Chiquita Brands International’s Chiquita Bananas US is relocating to Port Everglades, Fla., from North Carolina. The move will place the banana business closer to Florida ports, said spokeswoman Stefanie Goodsell.

The company also is moving its Salinas, Calif.-based Fresh Express division to Orlando, along with some corporate functions. The new locations will house up to 200 employees.

Chiquita became a private company last year when it was acquired by the Cutrale-Safra Group. Chiquita announced in January that it was closing its Charlotte, N.C., headquarters over a 12- to 18-month period. The company moved to Charlotte in 2011 after 25 years in Cincinnati.


Go Bananas! at Del Monte Fresh

Del Monte Fresh Produce NA Inc., Coral Gables, Fla., hosted its fourth-annual Go Bananas! Halloween Costume Giveaway during September to encourage healthy eating and living during the Halloween holiday and to promote Del Monte premium bananas as alternatives to traditional Halloween treats, said Dennis Christou, vice president of marketing.

The sweepstakes offered consumers a chance to win one of 1,000 Del Monte branded banana costumes to wear for their Halloween festivities.

The promotion was supported throughout the U.S. and Canada with secondary banana stickers, point-of-sale materials to liven up banana displays for Halloween and through Del Monte’s social media platforms, he said.


Dole launches joint ventures

Dole Food Co., Westlake Village, Calif., continues to expand its banana growing operations by purchasing farms and entering into joint ventures in Latin America, said Bil Goldfield, director of communications. In addition Dole continues to invest in new, faster and more efficient ocean vessels with three new state-of-the-art container ships to enter service in the fourth quarter, he said.

“From a consumer marketing standpoint, we’re excited that Dole bananas are taking center stage in Get Up and Grow!, our yearlong healthy-living initiative, which directly challenges consumers to lead a healthier happier life,” he said. Program elements include new recipes, serving, pairing and entertaining suggestions and the Get Up and Grow! tour, which traveled to 44 cities across North America this summer.

A highlight of the program is the first Get Up and Grow! Healthy Eating Pledge. Participants who took the pledge could receive nutrition tips and information from Dole and be entered into a rewards program and receive Dole fresh fruits and vegetables, fitness trackers and other health-and-wellness incentives.


One Banana adds organic program

Guatemala-based One Banana Co. launched an organic banana program in July, said Bernardo Roehrs, corporate director of AgroAmerica, the firm’s parent company. One Banana grows 865 acres of organic bananas in Peru. In all, the company has about 20,000 acres of bananas in Guatemala, Peru, Panama and Ecuador. Organic product is grown in Peru because the desert climate there is highly amenable to organic production, Roehrs said.


Turbana slates fall promotions

Turbana Corp., Coral Gables, Fla., is looking forward to a couple of fall promotions, said Marion Tabard, marketing director.

Oct. 23-25, Turbana will participate in the Marine Corps Marathon in the Washington, D.C., area as the official banana sponsor and composting partner. “Since 2012, we’ve fueled MCM runners with 30,000 bananas yearly through our ‘Powered by the Peel’ initiative,” Tabard said. “In 2013, we introduced a composting program to the over 200,000 attendees.” This year, the company plans to grow its composting program by creating additional opportunities for participants to compost throughout the event weekend.