( )

Sales are on the rise for West Bridgewater, Mass.-based Oke USA Fruit Co., which markets Equal Exchange Produce, said Angelica Hicks, banana category lead.

“In the past year, Oke USA banana sales have increased steadily, both in volume and revenue,” she said.

The company has launched a new program in Northern California with Earl’s Organic Produce and is growing in volume with its long-term partners in the upper Midwest and on the East Coast, she said.

“We are looking forward to maintaining these higher volumes as interest in Fair Trade organic bananas grows in the U.S.,” Hicks said.

Oke USA sources from three partner cooperatives in Peru and Ecuador.

“These democratic associations are made up of small farmers who pool resources and consolidate product to have sufficient volume for export year-round,” she said.