Edinburgh eco firm shells out on Filipino coconut venture
Edinburgh-based e-commerce site Ecohuman has launched a collaborative venture with Filipino craftsmen to turn discarded coconut shells and trees into crockery.
The ethical online marketplace has teamed up with contacts in the Philippines to repurpose the shells, which would typically end up in landfill sites, into eco-friendly, biodegradable bowls for sale in Scotland.
Ecohuman co-founders Nathan Blake and Jazelle Zabala (a native Filipino) were inspired to launch the joint venture while watching craftsmen at work in the Philippines during a family visit to the islands.
The pair have since turned their regular trips to the country into “working holidays” where they team up with coconut suppliers and employ local workers to harvest and shape the shells into multi-purpose bowls.
The latter are currently being trialled in the capital’s Cafe Presko and are available to buy at Ecohuman’s online shop.
In a further bid to reduce waste, Ecohuman, which donates 10 per cent of profits to ecological charities, has also commissioned cutlery to be made from a coconut tree that was to be cut down and abandoned after it no longer bore fruit.
Zabala said: “It gives me such a ‘feelgood’ vibe being able to help local communities where I grew up in our collaborative venture.
“We started Ecohuman as a means of doing something that brings about lasting change and a legacy we’ll be proud to look back on.”