Palmyra for Plastic, Cradle to Coffin. Meet Palmyra Man of India

Rev Godson Samuel believes contemporary Palmyra leaf products from backpacks to raincoats could significantly reduce use of plastic in our daily life.
Innovative modern handmade products made using Palmyra leaf could be a good solution for the overuse of plastics in daily life says Mumbai based Palmyra conservationist Rev Godson Samuel, even as the world community recently deliberated ways to combat climate change in Glasgow.
46 year old Rev Samuel, who originally hails from Tamil Nadu’s Nagercoil, also showcases an incredible range of contemporary palm products to woo communities to switch to this alternative to plastic, which would work well from what he calls “cradle to coffin”.
The impressive collection include aesthetically hand woven palm leaf made cradle, backpack, rain coat, umbrella, shoes, caps, sweet box, vanity and multi utility bags,  jewellery box, umbrella, decorative items, greeting cards, portraits and even palm leaf coffin. 
He has explored and given shape to these possibilities after working with lots of artisans across South India. If made popular, this lifestyle “would replace lot of plastic, wood and leather” Rev Samuel adds.
The produce from the tree including the fruit, sprout, tender fruit, palm jaggery and neera  are  popular besides the range of utilities for palm leaf and the trunk of the tree, however  its potential to drastically cut  use of plastic, Rev Samuel says “ought to be made popular”. “A change in mindset among consumers to turn eco-friendly in things widely used daily would give a good impetus” he adds. 
Cradle and coffin made of palmyra leaf demonstrate a new range of eco-friendly alternatives for plastic, wood and leather.
Passionate about Palmyra tree since the 90s, in 2016 this Priest had undertaken a 3000KM motorbike ride “Palmyra Quest Ride” along south India’s coast, from Mumbai to Tamil Nadu, exploring the Palmyra map in Andhra, when destruction of Palmyra groves was on the rise. 
Later, he spent two more years documenting all Palmyra stake holders including tree climbers, artisans and cultivators on their life, challenges and hope besides understanding several coastal communities who hold the tree “dear as their mother”. He came out with a book “Panaimara Salai” (The Palmyra Road) as well.
Palmyra is also the state tree of Tamil Nadu. His quiet work, awareness, drive and mission to plant Palmyra trees over the years has turned into a movement. Palmyra conservation had even become a poll issue earlier this year. The new government in Tamil Nadu has announced planting 76 lakh Palmyra seeds across the state.
While Palmyra artisans who belong to the earlier generation are dwindling, any rise of demand in the market, he believes, would activate and generate talent. He also moots the idea of taking care of the tree climbers who he calls are the true conservationists and  teaching this craft to school children to “keep it alive” and to let the traditional craft turn more “creative and contemporary in the hands and minds of the young”. 
Although Palmyra tree is seen as a Tamil identity, citing its spread across India and around the world, Godson says that Palmyra has a global appeal and potential to mitigate the global plastic challenge. He wants the  world community  to celebrate it and tap it’s potential. While some call him the “Palmyra Man of India”, Godson says “I merely connected all so people can understand.”

This Post Has One Comment

  1. ascii

    I am tгuly thankful to the owner of this website
    wһo has shared this impressive post at at this place.

Leave a Reply