Sustainable Products that are Locally Sourced and Locally Made
“Start meaningful change through simple actions” is the idea behind the Mauritian brand The Strawz. This change can be as small as eplacing single-use plastic straws with handmade and locally sourced bamboo straws – which is one of the many sustainable product ideas that are a part of their catalogue. ‘’We choose to work on locally made products because we have the resources but we are not exploiting it. Also, we believe that in this way, we can reduce our carbon footprint on import and export.’’, says Nathan Mourade, founder of The Strawz. The company provides natural alternatives to plastic and their solutions are lightweight, durable and of course biodegradable and focuses on involving and empowering their local community. Their bamboo straws and cups are made from raw materials that are available on the Mauritian island. Their coconut fibre cleaning brush is also made locally with help from Vietnamese based non-profit Zero Waste Saigon. The motivating factor behind one of their products – the bamboo straw is to create awareness amongst the people that there are alternatives to using single-use plastics. They presented their products in green market fairs, like Eco Marche, which was co-organised SUS-ISLAND.
Nathan also shared his views on what would help improve the local handicraft industry in Mauritius. ‘’My wish is that we stop the trend of increased import and start to stand up on our own feet and realise the potential of our local resources along with local job development and local community empowerment.’’
These products represent local resources as well as local innovation and are also inherently authentic. Tourists who find these products in hotels, restaurants or other places are made aware of the fact that Mauritius takes sustainability seriously. A locally made design is also a souvenir, that one can use back home while finding alternatives to using plastic. Some of the best souvenirs are the ones that don’t collect dust and can be used as a reminder from Mauritius. Other products sold under the Strawz umbrella include – Sugarcane fibre straws, jute pouches which can be personalised and handmade Raffia fibre purse, which is made from Raffia palm tree leaves.
For more information on The Strawz and theirproducts, click here – https://www.facebook.com/biodegradablestraws/
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Improving Sustainaible Tourism In Mauritius through Greening the Value Chain of Tour Operators (SUS-ISLAND) is a Switch Africa grand project funded by the European Commission and led by Mauritius Tourism Authority. Its objective is to promote sustainaible tourism in Mauritius by demonstration and scaling up a self-sustaining mechanism for improving sustainaibility impacts along the value chain improving awareness and market of sustainaible tourism products.