Saraswati Papers open their factory to group tours with a focus on trying to get young people to change the way they think about rubbish – how to reduce, reuse and recycle – and always encourages their visitors to get hands on with the process.
School students from around Bali are elbow deep in a mushy paste of recycled paper, eagerly stirring and straining. The industrial blender whirrs its magic and mush turns to pulp in front of us all while various products from the earth such as leaves, roots, as well as coffee and tea are added for natural dyes. In addition, sustainable plant fibers such as bamboo and flowers petals are added for texture.
Then the delicate process of laying paper begins. The careful placing of petals, the layering of leaves and the intricate application of shreds of grass becomes an intensely creative pursuit, invoking the image of Saraswati, the Hindu Goddess of beauty, knowledge and poetry, for whom the company is named.
The boys and girls involved create patterns and variations in colour with the helpful assistance of the Balinese staff, and by the time all the mush has become pulp and the pulp had become paper, the washing lines are full of delicate sheets to be wrapped and presented the very next day.
This form of education for school children offers a great opportunity to see the way businesses are approaching solutions to waste. It also provides them the experience to try something for themselves and take home some beautifully crafted paper. Innovation and creation are the brain child of all new learning.
Contact us if you have a group interested in visiting.