Day 6: Essential Costa Rica
The country's largest export of pineapples fits into the overall country brand of "essential Costa Rica" by showing off their work with the Earth And land of Costa Rica to produce such a premium product of fruit which ultimately displays their love of sustainability. I feel it showcases and makes the point that they're willing to put in the time into cultivating the land to be able to grow such large amounts of fruit which of course shows their willingness to be sustainable with their resources. It also shows the industrial side of Costa Rica rather than their tourism side. They're more than just beach resorts and mountains, they do also produce product from the land that is sold and distributed within the CAFTA-DR trade agreement.
I find that Costa Rica's largest export both is and is not consistent with the model of sustainability. It's consistent in the way that they get to reuse the crown of the pineapple to replant for the next crop the following year showing sustainability by use of ready made resources and not sacrificing others. They also use the shredded crown pieces and rejected pineapples to fertilize their existing pineapple plants demonstrating sustainability through the repurposing of bad and unwanted parts. They also do not waste any part of the pineapple. The ones that do not meet spec standards of the farm are used for juice and juice concentrate. The farm we visited harvested their crops by hand which decreased their total carbon footprint. They are not consistent in the way that the farmers cut down the forests to promote their pineapple crops i order to protect them from viruses and bacteria that could harm the crops. They also use heavy herbicides and insecticides that pollute the water tables which ensures they get a viable product at the end of the season at the sake of the environment. These practices are both counterproductive in the sustainability developments of Costa Rica.