Asheville Craftsman Supports Sustainable Rainforest Management
Brian Boggs Chairmakers provides market for responsibly harvested Honduran mahogany
In 1993, Brian Boggs co-founded a project in Honduras to teach artisan woodworking as a way to support sustainable forest management. After initial successes, this project grew into the NGO Greenwood and its sister NGO in Honduras, Madera Verde.
Through Madera Verde, Brian Boggs Chairmakers was connected with a trio of sawyers’ cooperatives in La Mosqutia, Honduras. These industrious sawyers already had contracts with Taylor Guitars and Collings Guitars to sustainably harvest mahogany for guitar necks.
Much of the wood they were cutting down in the process, while gorgeous, was not quite the tonal quality required for guitar making, so in June 2012 Brian traveled back to the region to take a look at this extra material, as shown in the short video below.
What he found exceeded Brian’s expectations: a wide array of rich, beautiful mahogany perfectly suitable for chairs and other furniture. To keep this fine material from going to waste, we ordered a container load of it, which we are excited to announce arrived on February 18th.
We are able to pay these cooperatives a fair wage for their labor, such that each tree can bring them upwards of $10,000 to support their communities. This purchase supports not only our production and the sawyers’ livelihood, but the rainforests themselves.
Honduran forest ecosystems, like many others in South and Central America, often face obliteration by the destructive yet lucrative practice of clearcutting to make way for the cattle industry. When sustainable rainforest management becomes more profitable than irresponsible slash-and-burn development, everybody wins. For Brian, this is the culmination of his original visits to Honduras, proof that healthy ecology can support a thriving local economy.
About Brian Boggs Chairmakers
Headquartered in Biltmore Village, just minutes from downtown Asheville, North Carolina, Brian Boggs Chairmakers represents a new business vision that fosters the highest levels of design, craftsmanship and sustainability in handmade wooden furniture. Our model integrates four key components: materials, workspace, training and visibility, creating opportunities for landowners, loggers, sawyers and craftspeople to work collaboratively to meet our clients’ needs through a mutually supportive and sustainable partnership.
Contact: The press may set up interviews with Brian by emailing Melanie@brianboggschairmakers.com or calling 828-398-9701. All photos are free for use by the press; for other uses (or for photos at 300 dpi), please contact Brian Boggs Chairmakers.