During the WBF’s first meeting, it was agreed to approve the following scope, mission and objectives which define the World Banana Forum.
The Forum focuses on internationally traded bananas (this term includes both dessert and cooking bananas), but ensures links and information exchanges with the scientific community and producing countries that are not currently major exporters.
The Forum strives to work towards a world where:
• Banana production and trade are sustainable from the environmental, social and economic perspectives.
• Every actor in the supply chain, from producers to retailers, receives a fair price that covers its costs and ensures a reasonable profit margin.
• All actors, including sub-contractors, respect the core international labour conventions and pay decent wages.
• The impacts of banana production on the environment are understood, quantified and optimized.
• Consumers are provided with good quality bananas and they understand the necessity to pay a sufficient price that ensures sustainable livelihoods for all actors of the industry.
• Divergence of views and interests within the sector are resolved through dialogue and collaboration.
The WBF promotes the worldwide adoption of best practices for sustainable banana production and trade and provides a space where farmer organizations, exporter groups, trading companies, worker unions, fresh produce companies, retailers, governments, research institutions and civil society organizations can discuss the various problems facing the banana sector and jointly seek solutions through collaboration. Specifically, the WBF, its specialized Working Groups and partners work together to promote:
• sustainable management of natural resources;
• mitigation of climate change and uncontrolled environmental impact;
• respect for human rights (labour rights, health and safety at work);
• promotion of gender equity;
• fair distribution of value along the supply chain;
• knowledge sharing as a tool for development (sharing information on best practices).
The Forum focuses its activities in finding practical solutions to field problems. It undertakes projects that can rapidly generate gains for all the stakeholders. An example is the production and dissemination of integrated pest management techniques that reduce the cost of inputs for farmers, increase yields, enhance product quality, improve worker health and preserve the environment.