• Survey/Questionnaire

    Communication

    I thought it would be most beneficial for me to get information about the current bone product industry in India as my mission is to revive this industry by creating a new market, so I directed my questions to bone product manufacturers in India. I emailed my questions to 6 different manufacturers, and 3 responded to the questions, and 1 said that they would get back to me this coming week as they were currently busy with a trade show in Hong Kong.

    Here are my findings...

    Aashish Wadhawan: Ethnic Artwares -What is the percentage of export and of local sales (in India) of handicrafts made from bone? ANS . The percentage of bone exports from India should be around 5% only. -Have bone products kept their initial traditional aesthetic, or have they been changed and modified to cater to different customers? ANS. Yes the bone products have changed in years to cater to the demand of the customer, though not much in the basic character.... -Are there any negative impacts on the environment while working with bone? ANS. No as the bone we use is of domesticated dead animals only . -Has the market for consumers of bone products increased/decreased/stayed the same, in the past twenty years? ANS. Has increased greatly and infact also acts as a substitute of Ivory , since it is banned to be exported from India. -Has the (monetary) value of bone products changed in the past 20 years? ANS. Yes the cost of raw material-Bone has increased 40% since the times when I started business in 1993. -Who is responsible for the designs of the products being manufactured? (designer/artisan) ANS. Both, the designer has to sit with the craftsman/artisan to get the desired result. -Do you feel that innovation in this craft sector would be beneficial? ANS. Yes innovation is the key to success in this trade...though the basis structure of bone is the same but can be customized as per the buyer's demand.Also we have started various combination in the bone so as to reduce the cost too....

    M.M Chawla: Arctic India International -What is the percentage of export and of local sales (in India) of handicrafts made from bone? I am trying the gather the info and will advise as soon as I have the approx data. -Have bone products kept their initial traditional aesthetic, or have they been changed and modified to cater to different customers? There is though lot of change and new modified products are being made but the aesthetic look of the bone is very much there that induces the customers to buy them -Are there any negative impacts on the environment while working with bone? Yes it does have negative impact while working.
    -Has the market for consumers of bone products increased/decreased/stayed the same, in the past twenty years? There has been tremendous increase in consumers of bone products during the last 20 years. -Has the (monetary) value of bone products changed in the past 20 years? Yes, since the demand has increased so is the increase in monetary value. -Who is responsible for the designs of the products being manufactured? (designer/artisan) In most of the cases Artisans themselves and then the buyer also have their contribution plus company designers will come out with some new ideas.
    -Do you feel that innovation in this craft sector would be beneficial? Innovation in any industry helps a lot. But the artisans normally not being much literate donot want to go for change and new ideas and are happy so far the existing designs are going fine and are doing well in the market. But yes there are a few who would cooperate in doing the new developments.

    Naresh Gupta: Siddhartha Oversees -What is the percentage of export and of local sales (in India) of handicrafts made from bone? Export is 90% and local would be 10%. -Have bone products kept their initial traditional aesthetic, or have they been changed and modified to cater to different customers? They have now completely been modified in to contemporary or classic designs. -Are there any negative impacts on the environment while working with bone? No negative impacts at all. -Has the market for consumers of bone products increased/decreased/stayed the same, in the past twenty years? Definately increased -Has the (monetary) value of bone products changed in the past 20 years? Yes, increased -Who is responsible for the designs of the products being manufactured? (designer/artisan). The designer -Do you feel that innovation in this craft sector would be beneficial? Absolutely.

    Although it was helpful to get these brief answers from manufacturers of bone products to get a general idea of the current bone industry, I feel that I need to dig a little deeper in terms of certain aspects... The following need more research: -The negative environmental impacts of working with bone. While Naresh Gupta and Aashish Wadhawan say that there are no negative environmental impacts, M.M Chawla says that there are some. I need to get information about the whole process of the manufacturing, from obtaining the material to packaging, which I have already started researching.. Perhaps the finish that is applied is hazardous.. -Innovation in this craft sector. While all three said that innovation would definitely be beneficial, M.M Chawla said that some artisans are reluctant to work on new designs if their current ones are doing well in the market. Or they are comfortable working on what they know already and do not want to experiment with new ideas. I feel that I need to speak to the artisans to find out whether what they are making matters to them as long as they are getting paid... -Who is designing the products (designer/artisan). The answers for this question varied for each manufacturer. I want to find out how the artisans feel about being given a design to make on which they have no input, as opposed to being a part of the design process. -Although the percentage of export and production for the Indian market vary with each manufacturer, I want to find out which countries are importing these products and what they are, and also what products are made for the Indian market. -In terms of the changes in the aesthetic of these products, I want to look at what exactly is being modified and what has remained the same... -In terms of the increase in monetary as well as the market value, I think that it is positive and that I could further contribute to it.

    I will send more specific questions to the manufacturers to help answer these questions.

    After getting answers to the questions in my questionnaire and reviewing them, as well as speaking with various individuals, more questions came up and I feel that I need to ask the Indian consumer some questions in order to get an understanding of what market I will be targeting- India/Asia/other. The questions: -whether the Indian consumer would wear bone products (jewelry). -how much the Indian consumer is willing to pay for "handicrafts". -what does the Indian consumer feel about bone products. -what the Indian consumer feels about the current prices of handicrafts (under priced/overpriced/fair). -whether the Indian consumer would spend a lot of money on handicrafts or would they prefer to spend that money on brand name products. -what does the Indian consumer feel about boutique handicrafts as opposed to similar objects that are sold in street markets. -what does the Indian consumer feel about contemporized handicrafts that are sold in foreign markets. Would they buy them?

    These are my thoughts so far... If anyone took the time to read this insanely long post, I would appreciate any thoughts/comments. Any holes/questions in my research? Lack of clarity? Anything!!

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