February 2012 saw me, Helen (AKA One Line Studio) begin 7 months of travel in Asia.
The focus was on visiting fair trade organisations and remote village artisans, to further my knowledge of fair trade practice. To generate ideas for cross cultural solutions in the industry.
Self funding and planning the tour was a carefully crafted budget and planning exercise. Eventually disembarking at my first stop Nepal I began to experience the wonderful insights by adapting to and welcoming in advice, projects and more…
First stop was Get Paper Industry (GPI), a paper products making fair trade co-operative, based in Nepal. It’s customer base is worldwide and it is the main supplier of paper bags and boxes for The Body Shop.
Over the course of 2 weeks I spent time training members of the design department on industry standard software. Consulted with owners on their business vision for a forthcoming trade show and worked closely with the marketing team to prepare for this. I secured a new buyer order with exclusive new product designs and understanding of product selections for the current market.
I then trekked into the surrounding villages to meet with local producers.
On to Mahaguthi, Craft With a Conscience, a fair trade organization which produces, markets and exports Nepalese crafts. Here I consulted on product selections for a new buyer order and communicated with the account handlers on ways to improve supplier to buyer communications.