Jute fair back in Port City

Entrepreneurs from six states are taking part in 5-day expo

Jute fair back in Port City

Jute fair is back in Mangalore for the fourth year, and this time with a lot more jute products in store. From the hand made eco-friendly jute pots and laptop bags to the trendy and fashionable footwears and accessories for women, the 25 stalls at Jute fair are displaying eye-catching lifestyle products, drawing the attention of jute lovers.

Entrepreneurs from six states including West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala are taking part in the Jute exhibition organised by the National Jute Board, which was inaugurated at Hotel Woodlands on Wednesday. Jute pot kept for sale in the stall owned by Padmapriya from Tamil Nadu is quite an innovative product. The pot which could be hung in indoor kitchen, comes handy for women folk to grow plants like ladies finger, mint, coriander and lucky plants. The hanging pot is made out of jute moulded with coir, and two coir piths are placed inside the pot. When water is poured into the pot, the coir piths will soften and will function as manure. Coirs need not be replaced for a period of six months.

Speaking about the advantage of the pots, Padmapriya said, the moisture content in coirs will remain for relatively longer period and the plants do not require additional manure. The cost is Rs 250 for each pot.

Kavitha Bhawariya from Khalighat in West Bengal has opened a stall for the first time ever. Displaying a wide range of accessories for women including ear rings, bangles, necklaces, purse and bags, Kavitha said she is into the business for last three years and it is for the first time she has opened a stall in the jute fair. “I have no idea about the profit and loss that I would get in Mangalore, but I have come with a hope that women will like the intricate work that we have done,” she said.

Agriculturist from Erode

Karthik from Erode in Tamil Nadu, basically an agriculturist, tried his luck in jute industry when his village faced severe drought in 2003. “It was then I decided, jute business is meant for me. I, along  with three of my friends have been trying to experiment with jute products by incorporating crafts. The hand bags I have displayed here have Madhubani, Kalamkari and Chittara designs on them, giving a more traditional look,” he said. Apart from these products, jute mats, curtains, footwears, hanging chair, dolls, wall hanging etc are for sale in various stalls. Gopalakrishnan from Thirpur said, there is a great demand for jute mats from countries like USA, Germany and Italy.

NJB offers training

Speaking to reporters, National Jute Board Market Promotion Officer T Ayyappan said, the Board functioning under the Ministry of Textiles, has been promoting jute by supporting jute growers in West Bengal, Assam and Andhra Pradesh, workmen of jute and producers and exporters of jute goods. The Board offers trainings to interested groups who wish to learn the manufacture of jute products and open the manufacturing units. The manufacturers buy fabrics from jute producers and sell the readymade products not only in their home states, but also across the nation through jute fairs organised by the NJB.

“NJB is ready to offer trainings in the manufacture of jute products, if a group of 30 individuals come forward to learn in this part of the region,” Ayyappan said. After inaugurating the expo, Deputy Commissioner N Prakash stressed on the need to use jute items as an alternative to plastic.

The jute expo will be open till August 4.

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