Co-op serves up banana bread

Countryman

The Carnarvon-based co-operative behind the lunchbox banana is now going bananas about bread.

It's newest product, banana bread - proudly claiming to have three bananas in each loaf - was launched by WA Agriculture Minister Ken Baston at the Perth Royal Show on the weekend.

The beauty of the Sweeter Banana loaf is that it is a way of using bananas classed as second grade.

These, said Sweeter Banana co-operative chairman Tim Hyde, were still delicious, but due to the external markings on the skin were not suitable for retailers.

Mr Hyde said the co-operative had developed a special recipe and its Buy West Eat Best certified Sweeter Banana Loaf used WA flour, WA eggs and WA sour cream, as well as its own Sweeter Bananas.

The loaf would enable consumers to buy a product containing bananas that previously had no market. "Food waste has an environmental, economic and social cost, and we are doing everything we can to ensure that every banana we grow is eaten," Mr Hyde said.

"Because of the unique qualities of sweetness and creaminess of our bananas, we can make a delicious banana loaf.

"In line with our spray-free growing methods, our sweeter banana loaf is free of additives and preservatives.

"As our bananas are so high in taste and flavour we have also been able to reduce the amount of sugar.

"Our banana loaf is naturally high in potassium, magnesium, and all the vitamins that are found in our bananas, and we proudly bake it in WA."

The bread is sold at Canning Vale markets.

Fact file *

·The Sweeter Banana Co-operative is owned and operated by 25 banana growers in Carnarvon.

·The innovative co-operative launched the original lunchbox banana product in 1993.

· Carnarvon supplies around 10 to 20 per cent of bananas to the Perth market.

·Second-grade fresh produce treated as food waste (not visually appealing to sell) is estimated to cost the Carnarvon industry $10 million per annum (based on 10 per cent waste on the industry worth $100 million a year).

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