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UNITED FRUIT CO.

Presented By Hayden Santimano CLAS Part I

Genesis
Bananas unknown until 1866 Captain Baker, Andrew Preston & Minor Keith form UFC on March 30,
1899

UFC purchases Boston Fruit Company and associates & Keith's properties Expanded cultivation by purchasing land

THE BANANA SUPPORT INDUSTRY


The Railways
International Railways of Central America (IRCA) Interdependency between both Transcontinental railroads dream United fruit company acquired favors like Land grants & Duty exemptions

The Waterways
Andrew Preston created United's Great White Fleet 1899 chartered four new ships (the Admiral Dewey, Admiral Schley, Admiral
Sampson, and the Farragut)

1903 the S.S. Venus 1st refrigerated ship 1904, United first to put commercial radio on shipboard By 1933 had fleet of 95 refrigerated ships 1913, Tropical Radio Telegraph Company was incorporated as a subsidiary of United Fruit

C.A. & Caribbean Economies Dependent on US Before WW II


Costa Rica 94 49 53 87 27 Dominican Republic Guatemala Honduras Panama

C.A. & Caribbean Bought US Before WW II


Costa Rica 55 67 50 Honduras Panama

53 62

Dominican Republic Guatemala

Very low level of diversification By 1913, fifty per cent of Costa Rican exports were bananas and thirty-five per cent coffee Guatemalan exports depended on eighty-four per cent on coffee and six per cent on bananas

American Mare Nostrum, 1900-1945


Early 20th century, the Central American and Caribbean countries under the
American influence as the US paid countries foreign debt with European powers

America has also used force to protect their interests General Treaty of Peace and Amity - countries committed themselves to
non-intervention in their neighbors affairs, and non-recognition of nonelected governments

Honduras
2nd largest banana exporter in Central America from 1900 until 1916 & 1st
after that

General Terencio Sierras dictatorship(1899-1903) Manuel Bonilla(1903-1907) General Miguel Dvila(1907-1911 nationalist) Manuel Bonilla General Tiburcio Caras(1932-1949) permitted reduced wages

Honduras
Manuel Glvez (1949-) created the countrys first income tax, health insurance, social security, and an eighthour day

May 1954 workers on strike, because of its peaceful nature more support Government declared itself neutral in this conflict U.S. government saw this strike as steps towards a Communist insurrection June 1954 agreement reached 21 % wage increase (from the original 71% demanded by the workers) and health care for the workers families

Guatemala
General Manuel Estrada Cabrera(1898-1921) 1901 - Gave United Fruit transportation concession over the Puerto Barrios
(in the Atlantic Coast)and New Orleans

1904 - Granted the IRCA a 99-year concession over construction and


management from Guatemala City with Puerto Barrios

Guatemala

General Jorge Ubico(1930-1944) The Indians called his The Father Ordered to work for local landowners at least 100 days a year Legal for the landowners to murder stubborn or rebellious Indians (rampant racism)

Paranoid of Communist conspiracies 1930 UFC dropped the port project to not compete with IRCA but still got to
keep land

Guatemala
After 1944 military junta: - ended censorship, forbade presidential re-election
for more than two periods, classified racial discrimination as a crime, established a 40-hour work week, forbade payment to the workers in tokens changeable for goods at the landowners store and legalized labor unions

Juan Jose Arvalo(1944-1949)

Guatemala

Captain Jacobo Arbenz(1951-1954)

Established the first income tax in Guatemala & created governmental competition
Built roads, ports and hydroelectricity 1951 the IRCA Annual Report included a Labor Relations

In 1952 Land Reform passed


If the landowners had not cheated on their tax forms, they would have received the amounts they were demanding

Carlos Castillo Armas(1954-1957)

UFCs Decline
Home Reasons
Banana consumption replaced by canned fruits Anti-trust regulations by getting rid of some of its lands Moodys rating

State Reasons
First permanent expropriations by Fidel Castro in 1959 Costa Rica passed a new legislation that forced significant increase in wages

External Reasons
In 1970 United Fruit merged with AMK Corporation creating a new company: United Brands

Conclusion
All dictators & UFCs relations started of with good intentions Less democratic a government, the more inclined to accommodate itself to
interests of United States and the United Fruit Co.

Dictators helped United Fruits business, and United Fruit helped them to
remain in power

Bibliography

Good dictator, bad dictator - Marcelo Bucheli University of Illinois at


Urbana

The case of United Fruit Company in Latin America Stacy May and Galo
Plaza

Thank You For Listening (or not)


Go Bananas!!!!!