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Chiquita announces commitment to preserve biodiversity

As a global corporate citizen, Chiquita recognizes the need for significant change in how businesses think about and interact with the environment. To demonstrate its commitment to reducing its environmental impact, the company is taking action to preserve and enhance biodiversity while growing and delivering its bananas to consumers worldwide.Nogal-2

Chiquita ceased forest clearing for agricultural expansion in 2005 to focus on rejuvenating and re-engineering pre-existing farmland. Current production is limited to areas that can support long-term cultivation, and lands that are not suited for production are transformed into conservation areas. Chiquita supports this transformation by partnering with stakeholders and local communities to plant new trees and return previously cleared areas to their normal state. Success of reforestation is measured by tracking wildlife. In 2017, three new species — including Costa Rica’s largest mammal, the tapir, a bell bird and a yellow spotted lizard — were found within conservation areas.

“At Chiquita, we value our commitment to protect the ecosystems in which we produce our bananas,” said Jamie Postell, director of sales North America for Chiquita. “As an authority in the produce industry, we lead by example by implementing preservation tactics that will reduce our global impact and ensure environmental prosperity.”

Chiquita also works to engage and partner with local farming communities to support biodiversity. In 2004, Chiquita founded the Nogal reserve with support from the Rainforest Alliance to promote conservation in Costa Rica. Reforestation in the Nogal area helps to reduce land maintenance costs and flood reduction. In Panama, Chiquita partnered with leading German retail and tourism group REWE to create a conservation area in the San San Pond Sak wetlands. Chiquita not only planted thousands of trees, but also helped to support financing of the purchase of the land from its previous owner. In 2018, Chiquita donated the reserve to the local community.

Since the 2018 donation and the conclusion of the project, Chiquita and REWE have continued to finance the maintenance, surveillance and protection of the reforested land. Several species live in the area, in particular sea turtles and manatees. From the beginning of the project in San San, about 30,000 hatchling turtles have been released.