August 06, 2018

Kayu x CURMA: Sea Turtle Conservation Through Wooden Watches

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  • There is now a growing awareness when it comes to locally-made products with more and more businesses popping up to cater to the many demands of consumers. When searching for Filipino brands, shoppers may be surprised to discover that the country now offers more than just locally-made clothes, shoes, and bags.

    Ivana and Mazari Watches (Php 2,300)/IMAGE Kayu Facebook page

    Back then, when Filipinos wanted a watch, they usually had a few imported brands to choose from. These days though, they have local brands like Kayu added to the list.

    Kayu Ivana (Php 2,300)/IMAGE Kayu Facebook page

    In Ivatan and Ilocano, kayu translates to “wood” and that’s exactly what the watches are made of. Its owner, Reiner Fabi, is a designer who was raised in Basco, Batanes. The team behind Kayu are all nature lovers and environmental advocates, which is why Kayu watches are all about bringing the wearer closer to nature.

    Kayu Mazari  (Php 2,300)/IMAGE Kayu Facebook page

    Humans have a long-standing fascination with sea turtles. Believed to be an aphrodisiac among many other things, they are prized for their eggs, meat, skin, and shells. Sea turtles play an important part in the marine ecosystem as they prevent the waters from being infested with jellyfish since they eat jellyfish.

    IMAGE Carlos Tamayo

    In all, there are seven different species of sea turtles, most of which are classified as endangered. Now, conservationists are racing to prevent this from worsening.

    IMAGE CURMA Facebook page

    Of the seven species, five of them call the Philippines their home. Unfortunately, all five are classified as vulnerable, endangered, or critically endangered species. One of the organizations working to save sea turtles is SIFCare (Science of Identity Foundation) through their project called CURMA (Coastal Underwater Resource Management Actions).

    IMAGE Carlos Tamayo

    In celebration of its 1st year anniversary, Kayu teamed up with CURMA to produce the CURMA watch. The watch is 45 mm in diameter, made of bamboo, and has a Pawikan (sea turtle) outline on its dial. It also comes with two interchangeable straps; one is black perlon while the other one is an olive green NATO strap. These colors were inspired by the grayish green to olive color of the olive ridley sea turtle, which are common in La Union during nesting season.

    CURMA watch with olive green NATO Strap  (Php 2,300)/IMAGE Reiner Fabi

    CURMA watch with black perlon strap  (Php 2,300)/IMAGE Reiner Fabi

    Profit from every CURMA watch bought will be given to the organization. In turn, the organization will use the money as an incentive for sea turtle poachers to turn over sea turtle eggs and sea turtles to the CURMA hatchery in San Juan, La Union.

    IMAGE CURMA Facebook page

    Each CURMA watch costs Php 2,300 and can be bought at the following stores:

    • CURMA Hatchery, San Juan, La Union
    • Common Room in Alabang Town Center
    • Common Room in Katipunan, Quezon City
    • Common Room in Powerplant Mall, Rockwell
    • Pop by Retail Lab in Glorietta 3, Makati

    Orders may also be placed through Kayu’s FacebookInstagram, and Viber (0917-658-2706). To know more about Kayu, you may visit their Facebook and Instagram pages. You may also visit the SIFCare and CURMA website to learn more about the advocacy.

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