BLOGS

Ethically Sourced Rattan

By Lita Bondlow

Ethically Sourced Rattan

Rattan makes a great sustainable choice for our environment. Why?

For generations rattan has been used extensively all over Southeast Asia to make furniture, baskets, plant containers and even homes. It is a multi faceted natural product with many uses. Rattan is related to the palm tree and grows like a tree only faster. It is one of the strongest woods in the world, with close to 600 types in its family. Ranging in thickness, different varieties are used throughout a product to create different textures and layers.

 
The use of rattan in furniture helps preserve forests by reducing the need to source wood from trees, preventing deforestation and logging. Rattan is a fast growing vine and only takes a fraction of the time a tree takes to produce the equivalent amount of wood. The harvesting is also more eco-friendly and the sourcing of rattan also helps provide jobs for inhabitants of the areas to help boost and maintain a sustainable economy.

 
Rattan manufacturing is low tech, not requiring production facilities or machines that pollute the environment. The craftsmanship has been passed on through generations. Rattan can be weaved into many different objects. And the best part is rattan is lightweight and durable.


Last but not least - since it's a natural material, it will eventually biodegrade back to where it came from.

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Responsibility

By Lita Bondlow

Responsibility

There are a lot of companies that have good corporate responsibility stories; there are a lot of companies that don’t.  The truth is, creating a truly sustainable business is incredibly difficult to do, and far too often there is a wide range of greenwashing taking place.  At Bali Bungalow we focus our responsibility efforts around three key areas: shipping, looping and sustainably sourced materials.  With regards to shipping: we move our product on an actual ship rather than an airplane, which naturally takes a little longer but emits far less emissions per pound.  With regards to looping: we reuse all packaging we receive in our containers – this extends the life of the materials we are working with.  And finally with regards to our cottage industry artisans – nothing is ever processed: our cotton is hand sourced, our wood is hand made, and our products are designed from materials that grow in the villages where they are created.  A completely sustainable business model will some day be possible, but it will take awhile before we can produce, package and ship 100% carbon free.

With that said – it’s up to all of us to rethink the way we live and the products we buy.  Send a clear message to the corporations of the world that will lead to real change.  Feel free to share your experiences and innovations in living a more sustainable lifestyle.

Sourced by Matt Bondlow at Scientific American.

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