Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos' Big Idea Was Bananas

Tech giant gives away thousands of free bananas every day
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted May 23, 2017 1:49 PM CDT

(Newser) – There's always money in the banana stand. Unless you're Amazon, of course. Then you just give those suckers out for free. The tech giant tells the Wall Street Journal it gives away about 8,000 bananas to employees and hungry passersby every weekday from two stands at its Seattle campus. The stands were the idea of CEO Jeff Bezos, who wanted to provide healthy snacks as a public service. Amazon decided on bananas because they don't need to be washed and come packaged in their own natural, compost-friendly wrappers.

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Since opening its first Community Banana Stand in 2015—the stands are staffed by "banistas" overseen by a "bananager"—Amazon says it's given away 1.7 million bananas. But Amazon's disruption of the banana market has made it difficult to find the fruit at nearby stores and restaurants. One cafe says it's selling far fewer bananas, suspecting customers are just going next door to get a free one from Amazon. Another nearby restaurant says customers bring the free bananas in to eat with their lunch. So it seems that while Bezos' innovation was a-peel-ing to a lot of people, local business owners wouldn't mind seeing the banana stands split. Read the full story here. (Read more bananas stories.)

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