In this competitive world the internet is flooded with a variety of different products, which gives us an opportunity to shop thousands of options in search of true value. Value in a product for most is measured by the price, look and the quality of a product. Although these are significant factors in the buying process, we often overlook a very important part: the effects on the makers and the environment. We believe this should be one of the core ingredients in any purchasing decision. While emerging large factories often throw morals and human rights overboard, there’s a sinking ship of resourceless local craftsmen doing things right.
Our eyes were opened when we met local craftsmen during our travels throughout the developing world. They were handcrafting remarkable products that were infinitely better than what we could find at home. We’d see these talented artisans bartering at small markets, carefully creating items from their small homes, or far away in the countryside practising traditional techniques.
The production process of many large producers results in the locals suffering. This disheartens us. Countless factories pay their staff as little as $1 USD per day, the workers (some of them children) work long hours and are frequently exposed to chemicals and toxins. Yet, despite the fact that mass-produced products are made for such a low monetary cost (at the expense of the workers), these items tend to be overpriced. This is primarily because the people at the top of the food chain pocket a large margin (some of which the makers deserve), and the middle men involved.
Thousands of local craftsmen compete against large factories, and frankly they are stuck in a rat hole. Each day it’s a struggle to put enough food on the table to feed the whole family. Marketing is a luxury that none can afford and the best bet is a market stall and a few friends bartering on the street. These locals need a boost.
We couldn’t resist helping these craftsmen, but we wanted to keep it as simple as possible. Therefore, we put their best products online and connected them to you. By exposing craftsmen and their products to the western world, we figured it could turn their lives around and help them break free. Each craftsmen dictates their own price and in turn, they receive what they deserve for their superior craftsmanship and hard work. Each item comes directly from the source to you (with no middlemen involved), meaning the prices are some of the lowest in the market (considering the quality). It’s a win-win.
How do we completely stop this madness in factories? We don’t know. What what we do know is that there is true craftsmanship missing in our world of automation and assembly lines. As more factories pop up and profit the big guys, the little guys and their unique products (which they take so much pride in making) are vanishing. At Duffle & Co we strive to rescue local craftsmen and create a ‘win-win’ for all parties. We urge you to question what you’re buying and make sure everyone wins – especially the workers. By thinking before we buy, step by step we can make a positive difference to the lives of the craftsmen and exploited workers.
To learn more about our craftsmen or see their creations, check them out here: duffleandco.com.