Conscious purchasing can be a real challenge when you start but we strongly believe that being informed is the first step towards making a better, greener and sustainable world.
Environmentally-conscious practices directly translate into sustainable living. Switching off lights when not in use, consuming less or no plastic, saying no to fast fashion, opting for an electric vehicle, choosing energy saving appliances are some of the lessons that we have learned early but seldom is our attention drawn towards making ethical and sustainable choices while buying furniture or piecing out the home-decor of our dreams. If eco-living is in the forefront of your mind, we have got your back.
In this blog, let us dive deeper and learn about the sustainable journey of one of the most sought-after furniture woods. One that is incredibly giving in nature and cares about sustainability- The Mango Wood. This alluring wood has the capability to adorn our homes with highly attractive furniture pieces.
Marvellous Mango (Mangifera indica) Wood
Originally from East Asia, Mangoes are loved across the globe. While India leads with 48 percent of the total world production, Thailand, China, Mexico, Philippines, Brazil, Indonesia, South Africa and sections of Australia account for the rest of it. While we are all well versed with the adorable and sweet fruits, not many of us know that Mango trees are exceptionally useful in wood carving as well. The wood is procured after the tree stops bearing fruits. The quality is incredibly amazing and is used to make almost everything in the furniture world. Chairs, bar stools, benches, baby chairs, wine cabinets, sideboards, display units, closets, dining room tables, dressers, desks, you name it and you can have it made from mango wood.
The wood obtained from Mango trees is as strong as an ash wood. As far as its other features are concerned, it is incredibly flexible, durable, highly water-resistant and beautiful. They are study and maintenance free and thus make a great choice for outdoor furniture. Also, ‘Spalting’ (discolouration due to fungi attack) takes place on Mango wood but that is what is loved most by the craftsmen. The resulting shades of colours and patterns are a delight to look at.
Mango trees continue to impress even when they stop bearing fruits. In our last blog, we discussed how the artisans of Saharanpur carve it into stylish furniture and other household items. For fine decorative carving and inlay work, Mango wood is their first choice.
Why is ‘Mango wood’ an eco-friendly timber?
Anyone looking to switch to ethically-made alternatives in wood carving, Mango wood should be your guilt-free choice. Dense grains, variety of tones and coarse textures add to its aesthetics value.
In comparison to the traditional woods, the environmental profile of the mango wood wins hands on. Firstly, the wood is harvested only when the tree has matured enough and its fruits bearing capability has diminished to a large extent. Also, the trees soar to a good height in 15 years while an oak tree takes almost triple the time. Mango wood ages gracefully, giving us fruits season after season. Once the last plucking is done, a new tree in planted in the same place.
Even though the stalwarts like Teak, Oak, Maple, Cedar make for lovely creations, Mango wood furniture has created a niche for itself with its style and sustainability. Globally, many brands have started to choose Mango wood for it complements their brand ethics. It is affordable, long lasting and completely sustainable.
Mango trees are known to capture carbon. Thus, the products made from them act as carbon storage units, doing a lot of good for the environment. Initially, the farmers would burn the wood after felling the tree, but now there is no air pollution ever since the craftsmen and environmentalists have taken a liking for it.
The environmental impact of a Mango tree is lower in comparison to its counterparts. It is affordable, readily available and it is not even high maintenance. Farmers do not have to fuss over its seasoning, processing or treatment costs. Mango wood is relatively soft in comparison to other hardwoods. It is handy to transform and chisel it into different shapes with far less resources. Less tools means less wastage. This eventually translates into lesser carbon footprint. Last but not the least, it makes a great choice for upcycled furniture as well.
Sustainable practices to follow while you choose your furniture
If you wish to have a voice in the green living movement and sustainability has got to your heart, below are some of the sustainable practices that we recommend to follow as a consumer as well as a furniture maker/seller.
- Check if the trees are cut down only when they are completely mature and have stopped bearing fruit.
- Ensure that the furniture makers procure the wood from the nearest source.
- Wood from endangered trees should be avoided and easily renewable sources should be used.
- One must opt for the furniture that has great usability and maximum functionality.
Since every choice we make has an impact on the environment, Mango wood is the best of both worlds - no compromise on quality and environment friendly.