Mekong rattan firms investigate global market at trade fair
HCM CITY — Producers from Viet Nam, Laos and Cambodia showcased their sustainable rattan products at the Spoga International trade fair that ended this week in Cologne, Germany.
"This [exhibition] is very important for us because we are now jointly promoting sustainable rattan products in the international market," Nguyen Truong Thien, director of the central province of Quang Nam-based Au Co Rattan - Bamboo Export Enterprise, said.
The company is a pioneer in using clean production technologies to process rattan.
The Spoga International Trade Fair for Sport, Camping and Garden Lifestyle was held from September 5 to 7, and attracted more than 2,500 exhibitors and 45,000 visitors.
For the last two years the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) has been working with local communities, rattan companies and national and local authorities in Viet Nam, Laos and Cambodia to promote clean production along the rattan supply chain.
Its aim is to improve livelihoods, promote responsible forest management and certification, clean up the rattan production system, and link local rattan products with the global market.
"The trade fair is a fantastic opportunity for the Mekong rattan industry to see first-hand how investing in sustainable and clean production systems can give them access to new markets," Thibault Ledecq, WWF's Rattan Programme Manager, said.
"Rattan companies need to be ready for a big leap in terms of developing environmentally friendly production systems and product designs if they are to attract international buyers," he added.
"Establishing a Sustainable Production System for Rattan Products in Viet Nam, Laos and Cambodia" is a project co-funded by the EU, international home-products retailer IKEA, and the German development finance institution. — VNS