In close collaboration with Magnus Eco Concept, since 2011
das Sortiment „Palmware“ für die Märkte in Europa und den USA entwickelt.
In the meantime, Bionatic and Magnus belong to the leading producers
und Lieferanten von Palmware weltweit.
Der „Rohstofflieferant“ für Palmware ist die Areka-Palme.
Cultivation and cultivation of the areca palm has been done traditionally for generations - similar to olive cultivation in the Mediterranean region. in small-scale plantations in the southern, subtropical part of India. The palm belongs not oil palms, no tropical forests are cut down or destroyed by large-scale monocultures.
As it grows, the Araka palm loses its long frond leaves growing from its trunk. The flat base of the leaf (the leaf blade on the trunk) remains undivided and is up to 60 cm wide and 100 cm long. The leaves fall to the ground and remain there until they are dry. The plantation farmers collect the dry leaves, cut off the leaf blade and bundle them for transport. These bundled leaves are the raw material for the production of palm goods.
Although no herbicides or chemical fertilisers are used on Areka plantations, certified laboratories regularly test for residues and suitability for direct food contact in accordance with EU/US guidelines. There have been no complaints in the past ten years.
Since 2011, Bionatic has been working very closely and in partnership with Magnus Eco Concepts (MEC) in the southernmost state of India, Tamil Nadu.
The company was founded in 2008 by brothers Satheesh and Nandha Kumar and is focused on the production of palmware products.
Founded literally in the garage at home, MEC grew dynamically, especially through the activities of Bionatic, and moved into a new production facility in 2014. A further production facility and warehouses were added to this location over the years. At the beginning of 2020, MEC employed 170 people.
Over the years, a highly trusting and personal relationship has developed with the founders, which now goes beyond business and develops across the families of all involved.
In 2016, the excellent business and personal relationship between Bionatic and MEC was further strengthened by Bionatic taking an entrepreneurial stake in MEC.
But product quality and a modern manufactory are not everything. Equally important are the working conditions for the - predominantly female - employees on site.
To ensure that their workers get to and from work safely, MEC bought buses and hired a driver. The driver now picks up the workers every morning and drives them home at the end of the working day. Free of charge.
On a piece of land, the founders do natural farming with some employees. They grow fruit and vegetables and give the harvest to their employees to ensure that they have healthy food. Everyone is allowed to pay what he or she thinks is appropriate for the fresh food. Profits are not made through this.
For every child of a staff member, Satheesh and Nanda Kumar plant a teak tree. The families take care of the tree and are allowed to harvest it after 15 years. The wood is sold and the families receive the proceeds to finance their child's education.
Meanwhile, around 180 women and men work at MEC. And because many of them have small children whose care is not always guaranteed during the day, new premises were built in spring 2018. They now house a small kindergarten. Two caregivers look after the employees' offspring free of charge during working hours.
Many production plants in India pay their workers piece rates. MEC does not. Here, hourly wages are paid that are also above the usual average. The employees receive paid holidays and have health insurance. Work is done in eight-hour shifts, six days a week. Overtime is paid double. And when it comes to occupational safety, MEC makes no compromises. Regular training in the safe use of the machines and how to behave in emergencies is just as much a part of the programme as appropriate work clothing and unannounced fire alarm drills.
Regulated working hours, fair pay, safe working conditions and a comprehensive social package?
In jährlichen Abständen werden bei MEC Audits zur Einhaltung der „Business Social Compliance Initiative“ (BSCI) Vorgaben von unabhängigen Prüfeinrichtungen durchgeführt. Geprüft wird nach den strengen Kriterien des BSCI-Standards. MEC hat jedes dieser Audits bestanden.