Sustainable rattan design from the Mekong countries



Posted on 07 February 2011  | 
The Mekong region is one of the most diverse on the planet. Within the last decade, more than 1,000 new species have been discovered. Sadly, this paradise is threatened by uncontrolled deforestation and climate change.Rattan is big business. Global trade is estimated at US$2 billion (INBAR, 2009). It plays an important role in creating jobs and may account for up to 50 per cent of the income in a community.

Unsustainable rattan harvesting leads to deforestation, forest degradation and income loss. The WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature) runs a sustainable rattan programme, co-funded by the EU and IKEA. Its aim is to improve production and prevent negative impacts on people and the environment.

Design is key for market access. Producers need to develop attractive products that meet international requirements. That’s why the WWF is cooperating with designers from Lund University in Sweden and designers in the Mekong region. Clara Lindsten is one of these designers. She spent the last six months in the Mekong region, working with producers in Vietnam.

“There is a lot of rattan waste, which could be used for innovative product designs,” says Clara Lindsten.

Do you too want to be part of a sustainable supply chain in Laos, Cambodia or Vietnam? Come and visit the WWF-booth located in hall 10.1 FOY 01 + 03!
Use-of-waste product design
© N.Promsouvanh Enlarge
Weaving rattan stool
© Delphine Joseph Enlarge

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