Thursday, 17 February 2011

NAHBS - Bamboo bikes are go


Craig Calfee is one of a tiny group of US frame builders using the bicycle as a means of economic development at the micro-level in developing countries (Tom Ritchey is another).
Having started building bamboo bicycles in the early 1990s, Calfee realized that the material is so widely available and inexpensive around the world, it was feasible to start a supportive (as opposed to exploitative) multi-national business with very little capital, using all local resources.
In 2007, after posting a notice on his website that he would like to proliferate bamboo bike making to solve local transportation needs and create lucrative, reliable jobs in developing economic regions, he collaborated on a feasibility study with Columbia university and chose Ghana  as the country to launch the business. 
Bamboosero is expanding at a steady pace, with production operations now in Ghana, Uganda and New Zealand, with the Phillipines and Zambia in the pipeline. 
Link to photo essay.