Frequently Asked Questions
Is Abaca a sustainable fiber? Yes, Abaca is made from a banana plant grown in the Philippines by local farmers.
Is Abaca wear resistant? Yes, extremely. Abaca is the strongest of the natural fibers. It was first imported into the United States in 1820, and used by the US Navy for rope because it is the strongest natural fiber. It is resistant to salt water (perspiration), and it can be made into delicate silk-like fiber.
Abaca is called "manila hemp", how is it different from hemp?

Abaca is a natural fiber like hemp. Abaca originates in the Philippines and comes the leaves of a banana plant. Hemp is made from the fiber of the Cannibis plant (that's majiajuna). Pure hemp has the texture of coarse linen and if often mixed with other fibers to soften it. Abaca has finer texture and can be almost as soft as silk. Abaca is stronger than hemp.

Why are you operating a a "for profit" company rather than a non-profit?

Our goal is to produce commercial jobs and infrastructure for the people in the Philippines devastated by Typhoon Haiyan. It cannot be denied that the people of the Leyte region of the Philippines need money but there are governental organizations and non-profits that are doing this. Our goal is the longer term goal of building a sustainable economy based on profitable enterprizes.

If you would like to donate money to these people, may we suggest the non-profit non-governmental organizations below.

Direct Relief

  • check "Direct support to"
  • then select Option


Are these goods produced in sweat shops?

We deal with exporters who work with individual artisans. The exporters are generally very small businesses. The seamstresses are generally individuals at home.

We have a representative in Leyte who visits these suppliers regularly and checks on conditions. From time to time, we will post news about the artisans on our Facebook page.