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Compagnie Fruitière is ramping up its organic banana production in Ghana in a bid to cash in on continued growth in the organics market.

The fruit supplier, which has extensive banana and pineapple growing operations in West Africa, will plant around 100 additional hectares of organic bananas in the coming year.

The expansion of the company's banana plantation in Ghana’s Volta region comes as the UK organics market continues to grow. Overall organic sales rose by 5.6 per cent in 2016, according to the UK's Organic Trade Board.

Compagnie Fruitière's growth in organicsis part of a wider five-year plan from the French company to expand production at its three banana-growing sites in Ghana, Cameroon and the Ivory Coast. In terms of its growing standards, the company now only grows Fairtrade bananas in Ghana and Cameroon, while in the Ivory Coast bananas are grown to Rainforest Alliance standards for Tesco.

The firm’s UK sales and marketing director Toni Direito said: “Organics is the key area for growth in the market place so we’re going for that. There’s a growing market for organics and Compagnie Fruitière wants to move with the trend and stay ahead of the game.”

In the UK the firm supplies organic bananas to three of its key clients: Sainsbury’s, the Co-op and Marks and Spencer.

In total, the company produces over 460,000 tonnes of fruit and vegetables, distributes over 673,000 tonnes of bananas and sells to over 45 countries globally.