Recycled plastic baskets
Tucked away in a small village in north east Thailand are the Khohn Taka, which translates as basket people. These people have the skill and patience to make a recycled basket from old plastic straps. Not as easy as it sounds!
Recycling has long been a way of life in this part of Thailand. Anything that can be re-used is re-used. Old cars are taken to pieces bit by bit. Beer bottles are returned to the brewery and refilled. And plastic packaging straps used to reinforce parcels are collected from local factories and turned into baskets.
The baskets are woven by hand. After a day in the paddy fields the villagers return to their homes and have the opportunity to earn some extra money by weaving. Originally the baskets were made for the fish markets where their tough waterproof qualities make them ideal. Since then several different designs of recycled plastic basket have been created. The Khohn Taka's recycled shopping basket and recycled bicycle basket are now widely regarded as eco-design classics. Each basket uses about 50m of straps.