Editor's note: Haas grad students Lindsay Daigle, David Hall, Matilde Kamiya, and Toshi Okubo and are filing regular dispatches from Borneo this summer.
In East Kalimantan on the island of Borneo, Indonesia, there is a very ambitious group of farmers attempting to turn the traditional rattan (a type of bamboo) cultivation by which they make a living into a profitable and sustainable business. The group originally formed in 2002 as P3R, or the Rattan Farmers and Craft Makers Association, to help its members keep more of the value at the farmer's level and to avoid clear-cutting forests for rattan harvesting. The organization has received a commitment of support from the Consortium for Community-based Forest Management East Kalimantan (SHK-Kaltim), a non-governmental organization committed to the environment.
P3R has clear goals, committed members, and a supporting organization with environmental expertise. Four Berkeley MBA students are visiting Kalimantan to consult with the fledgling business, help hone its business plan, devise an effective marketing strategy and ultimately help the group retain more earnings from its value chain.
— Lindsay Daigle, David Hall,
Matilde Kamiya and Toshi Okubo