In this fast-changing world, it is not enough to only present attractive, trendy, and functional products.
Kultura is proud to be one of the thoughtful advocates of more sustainable, meaningfully made and locally sourced goods for green living. With a loyal following and many branches across the country, Kultura takes their mission of building a greener Philippines seriously.
Culture President Ivy Yap explains, “Retailers can influence customer purchasing decisions depending on our product offerings, pricing strategies and promotions—from product displays to discounts and loyalty programs. Using this influence for good, Kultura helps consumers adopt greener lifestyles by offering a wide selection of products made from natural materials that are biodegradable, upcycled or repurposed, other than locally sourced.
Today, the Kultura store is full of Green Finds that make it easier for customers to lead a sustainable lifestyle.
Platform with a Purpose
Kultura, an SM Retail Affiliate, has been key in promoting Green Finds- products that are sustainably sourced and support local communities.
SM through Culture, has become a Platform for the growth of MSMEs. Millie Monday and Haspe are two Filipino retail brands that have partnered with Kultura and appreciate how Kultura has become an effective incubator for their respective businesses.
Mariel Ching told Millie Monday how this division of their Primex printing company was named after their mother, and how it specializes in combining the art and technology of printing to create functional paper related products. and accessories for the home. “It was taken out of the pandemic as regular printing jobs were lost, and the family had to find ways to renew our outputs, and keep our staff and machines occupied.”
Today, Millie Monday is expanding its product lines, to include other non-paper products. Thanks to Culture, Mariel is happy to report that many orders, and direct purchases from foreign countries such as Singapore and Tokyo, have taken place. Their collaborations with established artists have produced well-received collections, and they credit Kultura with helping to create awareness and goodwill for their brand.
On the sustainability features of the Millie Monday brand, Mariel spoke about their sustainably sourced paper, and soy-based ink, as well as their Heidelberg offset machine, which was acquired with a provision that included planting trees in Africa. . “We are the only printer in Asia that was awarded the Green Leaf Award by Kodak in 2019. We do not print on tarp, because it is not biodegradable.”
Haspe is the Spanish/Filipino word for wood grain, and it is an indicator of the world of Baliwag, Bulacan native Arch. Eric Gonzales, who designs and creates beautiful wood-based products and accessories that catch the eye of shoppers who regularly visit CITEM, FAME and ArteFino fairs. “Our ‘sungka’, and chess board, made of mahogany wood and solihiya (rataan weaving), is one of our signature products”.
Since Haspe does not have a showroom in Metro Manila, Eric praised Kultura for its value in terms of brand awareness. “We started in 2016 with more traditional pieces of furniture, and were inspired in 2019 to use excess wood, and design smaller pieces.” He expanded to include rattan, bone, and other locally sourced materials. The wood he uses is sustainably farmed in Mindanao.
Sustainability is easy at Haspe because the products are a form of up-cycling, since the wood used to make these products comes from ‘retasos’, or leftover materials, that would otherwise have been thrown away. Haspe products have become the pride of Baliwag, Bulacan.
For Millie Monday and Haspe, the sustainable aspects of how they operate their businesses are a given, as they recognize the need for more responsible entrepreneurs.
While they have been with Kultura for less than a year, they both honor their association with Kultura as gods, and are happy to be placed under the Green Finds umbrella.
Being sustainable and green conscious is a joint effort, from manufacturers and sellers, to consumers; and SM is happily pushing the education, awareness and marketing of this new consciousness.
“By educating customers about the importance of sustainability and providing easy access to products made with that in mind, we aim to promote behavioral changes in our customers and motivate them to take the lead in more eco-conscious life. We hope that our efforts will inspire other businesses and lead to the adoption of more eco-friendly practices in the retail industry, and ultimately contribute to a more sustainable future for the country,” said Yep.