The Kusamba Salt project is a sustainable livelihood development initiative that hopes to encourage the preservation of traditional cultural practices, and promote employment opportunities for Pengarrap Garam (salt-workers) in Eastern Bali.
The fields of fine black sand along the Bandung Strait seashore have been used for traditional salt making in Bali for centuries. Pengarrap Garam operate in family groups, everyone spending at least 4 hrs a day on the beach carting water by hand in 50kg buckets made from recycled truck tyre tubes. They can produce up to 100kg per week, which when sold at the local market barely covers their basic needs as living costs inflated through tourism and global trade continue to rise.
The process is un-mechanical and also limited by climate to about 6-7 months of the year. To protect the drying salt from the rain during the rest of the year, coconut frond rooves are places over the drying beds, but harvest is greatly reduced due to longer drying times.
The salt produced by Kusamba families is in demand locally and initial testing shows the salt to be very high quality. 3C Projects will also engage in market research to evaluate the potential for promoted sales through the Bali tourism industry as well as export.
In consultation with the Pengarrap Garam families and immediate Kusamba community, 3C Projects will assist in developing a sustainable model of salt-water cartage that will increase production in the most productive part of the year and assist drying in the wet.
The three critical components of this project are that:
- cultural integrity is maintained by not changing any part of the process and using only local resources;
- the introduction of passive technology such as solar pumps and fans is integrated with training so they are able to be maintained locally; and
- marketing is maintained in line with production output and does not exceed market demand or unduly stress the community due to premature growth.
Stage 1 (Sept-Nov 2013): Site visits and community consultation to establish cultural impact of project and discuss appropriate production strategies (including solar); Further quality testing, market research and community business planning for export.
Stage 2 (Mar-Nov 2014): Specialist engagement for production technology design, delivery and training. Monitoring and evaluation of production and new equipment performance over an 8 month dry season to measure project outcomes.