SUSTAINABILITY AT KILMORA

Value Proposition offered by Kilmora

Being socially-conscious is one of KGU’s core philosophies. KGU reinvests in the community by working towards providing a fair deal to our artisans and farmer-producers. We also contribute to community development in the area by financially supporting a primary school and hospital.

 

At KGU, our focus has been on livelihood generation in a challenging Himalayan landscape. Migration and finding work in the cities has been the established pattern in these areas. However, in the last 25 years, our organisation has been working on: some environment-friendly practices:

  • Livelihoods around hand-woven products using handloom,
  • Creating supplementary incomes for women by training them in art of foraging for herbs from the forest floor,
  • Using traditional knitting skills of women in the area to create high quality knitted products,
  • Supporting farmers by buying traditional grains and spices grown in the area, and
  • Supplementary incomes for women by training them to grow and dry culinary herbs

With people staying in the villages and slowing migration, we hope to have a community that is connected to its land and forests. Saving forests or agricultural land is possible when people feel vested in the land. And also, when they see it as a profitable option to keep these forests which give them a source of livelihood.

“We are now working towards meeting our responsibility towards our planet.”

Organisations can no longer ignore climate change and its detrimental impacts. For small organisations like ours, it is a challenge to incorporate environmental best-practices into our way of functioning because of cost-implications.

However, at KGU, we have already introduced some environment-friendly practices:

 

  • rainwater harvesting at our office,
  • introduction of washing hand-woven items with soap nut, and
  • move towards preservative-free products at the agri unit.

 

 

Further, no chemicals are used in the growing of grains, herbs, or spices we procure and market. Waste knitting and weaving yarn is reused and waste pulp is used as animal feed. For some packaging, the use of pine needles and repurposed boxes has been introduced.

More steps that are envisaged in the near future:

 

  • introduction of solar power at the weaving and washing units,
  • increased use of rainwater harvesting at more units,
  • setting up of a waste water treatment unit,
  • introduction of natural dyeing,
  • move towards organic certification, and
  • move towards preservative-free products at the agri unit. 

KGU recognises that moving towards reducing its environmental impact is an evolutionary process and will take some time and Sustainability is a journey that requires effort and commitment.

RECYCLING

We use waste material in both our weaving and knitting units to create new products.   The waste woven fabric is used to create cushion covers and carry bags. The waste knitting yarn is used to make earrings. Waste fruit pulp is given to people in the community so that it can be used as cattle feed.

RESPONSIBLE PACKAGING

 

We are working towards plastic-free packaging. Recently, we have started using pine needles and re-purposed boxes for some of our online orders. This has been appreciated by our customers.

Glass jar with Apple Rosemary Jam resting on top of dried pine needles

SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are targets for global development adopted in 2015.

Sustainable Development Goals defined by the United Nations