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Materials with a purpose: The Philippines pushes for sustainability through design at Ambiente 2018

Showcasing innovativeness in manipulating renewable sources, 15 Philippine lifestyle brands participated in Ambiente 2018 trade event in Messe Frankfurt, Germany, from February 9 to 13.
Home decors from Freden Arden Classic Inc., Artisana Island Crafts, Celestial Arts, Inc., Chanalli, GSG by Flora Cereatives, MARSSE Tropical Timber Plantations, Nature’s Legacy Eximport, Inc., PumiceUnlimited Ventures, Red Slab Pottery, Larone, Finali, Silay Export, Inc., TADECO Home, and 33 Point 3 Exports, Inc. embodied the theme of “Sustainability through Design” for the Philippines’ third collective participation at Ambiente.
Sustainable design has risen in popularity in recent years for its social, economic, and ecological principles, such as emotionally durable design, recyclable properties, and use of low-impact and renewable materials.
It is a general reaction to the global environmental crises, depletion of natural resources, damage to ecosystems and the environment among others. With an emphasis for ethics over aesthetics, there is a misconception that sustainable design lacks inspiration.
“Through our participation in Ambiente 2018, we want to prove that we don’t need to sacrifice design for sustainability. These are products that are aesthetically pleasing, eco-friendly, and sources responsibly,” said CITEM executive director Clayton Tugonon.
The Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions, the exports promotions arm of the Department of Trade and Industries, has organized the participation as part of the LifestylePhilippines brand.
From conventional local materials like abaca and rattan to hardened lava, the Philippine participation highlighted the inventiveness of Philippine artisans in transforming renewable materials into premium modern pieces.
PumiceUnlimited Ventures creates home décor and accent pieces from all natural volcanic stone taken from the Mount Pinatubo eruption site. The lava rocks are non-toxic and any rock waste are donated to the local government for road construction.
MARSSE Tropical Timber Plantations creates sustainably made home, kitchen, and dining accessories from responsibly logged wood. The company is an avid promoter of sustainable management of forest plantations as well as promotion of modern forest technologies.
A maker of sustainable and innovative materials, Nature’s Legacy is a global manufacturer of home furnishings and garden accessories. The company only uses agri-forest debris as raw materials for products, ensuring buyers that no trees were cut for their products.
“We as designers and manufacturers have a responsibility in minimizing the negative impact on our country’s resources and at the same time, connect with international trade buyers through our products,” added Tugonon.
Ambiente 2017 attracted more than 4,400 companies and exhibitors from 94 countries. The trade fair also branches out to international markets, holding shows in the major Asian cities of Tokyo, New Delhi, and Shanghai.

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