Kolkata trade fair: Utility products more on demand

Kolkata, Oct 31 (Calcutta Tube / IBNS): Utility products are more in demand than purely decoratively products at Fair Trade Fair which opened at Ice Skating Rink in Kolkata on Saturday.

Bipin Shaw of Delhi based Aparajita Trust said, “Consumers are seeking utility products more than decorative ones.”

“Utility products which is also decorative have the most value to the consumers,” he said.

The annual Fair Trade Fair, which is organized by Sasha, a non-profit NGO for communities of craftspeople and artists, and Fair Trade Forum-India, was inaugurated by fashion designer Sharbari Dutta and Kasturi Gupta Menon, president of Crafts Council of India.

Dutta said: “There are lot of products in the fair from all over country, specially from rural areas which are not generally found in malls and other large shops and they are definitely going to attract consumers.”

Traditional handicrafts from all over India are on display, which include home textiles, decorative hangings, toys, fashion jewellery and many more items.

Madhubani painting from Bihar, which is created on handmade paper using cow dung, multani soil and natural colours, is one of the special attractions in the fair and are priced between Rs 50 to Rs 5000.

Radhika group from Puri has exclusive coconut coir crafts to offer which starts at a price as low as Rs 20.

Parampara store has the famous palm leaf engravings, an ancient form of painting, in their store.

The paintings are made on palm leaves using lamp kajal and secretions from tamarind.

The paintings, which generally depict religious and folk tales, might take a toll on the pocket of a prospect buyer as the price can go up to Rs 50000.

A stall from Nainital was seen to be displaying woolen products such as shawls and scarves which generated interest among buyers as winter is not far. The scarves starts from Rs 300 while the shawls are priced between Rs 1000 to Rs 1800.

The stall also has many Gharwal herbs and spices in their store. Oregano, Majoram and Lemon grass, a herb which is taken as tea, are to name a few among them.

Apart from these, there are Dhokra and ceramic works, katha works, cosmetics and cookery and many more crafts and products were on displays which are surely going to catch the fancy of buyers.

It was learnt from one of the store holders that matching colour rather than contrasting colour combinations are being preferred by consumers and colours like black, blue red and green are the more popular colours when it comes to dress materials.

Roopa Mehta, Director of Sasha, said, “The trade fair will provide opportunity to the producer groups to exhibit their work and interact with consumers directly.”

The fair will end on Nov 2.

(Reporting by J P Mandal)

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