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Jamaica - House flags of Shipping Companies

Last modified: 2021-08-25 by rob raeside
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Jamaica Banana Producers Steamship

image by Jarig Bakker, 19 August 2004

From the link provided by Barbara Tomlinson of The National Maritime Museum <>: "The house flag of the Jamaica Banana Producers Steamship Co. Ltd, Kingston, Jamaica. A green pennant with a yellow cross. In the quarters are the yellow initials 'JBPS'. The flag is made of a wool and synthetic fibre bunting. It has a cotton hoist and is machine sewn. A rope and toggle is attached."
Jarig Bakker, 19 August 2004

From [], the postcard collection sent to Martin Karner on Jun 8, 2006, by a Mr. Jones:
08.1.1 "Jamaica Banana Producers' Steamship Co. Ltd."  Post card collection confirms the basic design (…) but uses white instead of yellow.
António Martins, 21 February 2007

Could this be a mistake in the card or a variant?
See also image attachment which combines the former JDFL white cross with the green field and (white) initials JBPS.
Jan Mertens, 26 April 2007

Previous Flag of Jamaica Direct Fruit Line

image by Eugene Ipavec, 26 April 2007

Recent addition to the Maritime Timetable Images’ site is ‘Jamaica Direct Fruit Line’, showing a Sailings List & Rate Sheet for the period August 1932 – February 1933 (London – Kingston and back via Plymouth and Rotterdam).  
The picture of the house pennant which is red with a white cross throughout and white initials JDFL (no serifs) in the fields defined by the cross.
This pennant is related to that of the ‘Jamaica Banana Producers Steamship Co. Ltd’. Some digging revealed this National Maritime Museum (Greenwich) comment: “The company was formed in 1929 as the Jamaica Direct Fruit Line by the Jamaica Banana Producers Association of Kingston (an organization of independent growers). Four steamers were purchased to transport passengers and general cargo from London to Rotterdam and Jamaica and ship back bananas to Europe- most banana boats had some passenger capacity. In 1935 the line bought new ships to replace their second-hand tonnage and changed their name to the Jamaica Producers Steamship Company. The company flag, originally red with a white cross and the letters ‘J D F L’ in the quarters changed to green with a yellow cross and the new initials. Their ships sailed under the Jamaican Flag following that country’s independence in 1962. The Jamaican Government took over the company in 1977 and it ceased independent operation in 1980.”
National Maritime Museum mentions Kaye Son & Co. as the company managing the JDFL’s ships.
JDFL and JBPS also appear, briefly, on The Ships List site while some interesting details are found on Jamaica Fruit & Shipping Co.’s homepage.
Jan Mertens, 24 April 2007

Jamaica Planters Shipping

image by Jarig Bakker, 14 September 2005

Jamaica Planters Shipping Co., Kingston - yellow flag, a wreath of 8 green banana-leaves surrounding green "JP".
Source: Brown's Flags and Funnels Shipping Companies of the World, compiled by J.L. Loughran, Glasgow, 1995.
Jarig Bakker, 14 September 2005