design for a sustainable future
Organic Materials - Kun-tiqi surf board
Tourism is one of the major global industries. In the UK alone the sector is worth £114bn, supports 2.7 million jobs and 200,000 small and medium sized firms. A lot of us dedicate the holidays to our hobbies such as hiking, cycling, golfing, sailing or surfing, all of which need equipment. Kun-tiqi offer a well designed surf-board made from organic materials and produced in the coastal area of Ecuador.
Most surf-boards are made from polyurethane or polystyrene which are produced from mineral oil and the manufacturing processes are very energy intensive. At the end of the lifecycle the boards cannot be recycled and they are certainly not bio-degradable.
Kun-tiqi have gone back to the roots of surf-board manufacturing and use a material which has been used for building floats for thousands of years. The core of the surf-board is made from balsa wood (Ocroma Pyramidale). Balsa is the lightest wood of all and it is one of the fastest growing species, reaching a height of up to 10 metres and a diameter of 20-25 centimetres within 3-4 years. The wood is grown on a family farm in Ecuador on a sustainable, mixed cultivation programme together with bananas, yucca and beans.
A local craftsman builds the light and hollow blank for the board after which the board is given the right shape by cutting, planing and sanding it. Finally the board is laminated with a resin, which consists of 98% linseed oil. The resin applied is the latest development of the industry working in renewable and environmentally friendly production.
The protection of nature and the careful use of resources is at the heart of Kun-tiqi's philosophy. The company helps to build a family and community based business in Ecuador which is founded on sustainable principles. As the boards are made from balsa, they are 100 per cent bio-degradable.
Kun-tiqi currently offers seven different models. Each board is unique as it is made from natural material and the grain of the balsa wood is never the same. They are wonderful objects in themselves, with a beauty all of their own.