Truth About Ivory - Why Should You Ditch It and Switch It
While not common today, for years, ivory was used as a primary component of jewelry, musical instruments, figurines, and a lot more. Chances are, if you have an antique bracelet or something of this nature, it’s mostly made of the material. Ivory has a soft shine and cream white coloring and is easily identifiable because of its source – elephant tusks.
Maybe you already knew that ivory was the result of taking animal tusks, but one might assume that because the practice was so common, the process was simple and painless. Unfortunately, this couldn’t be farther from the truth. Buying and selling ivory has been illegal since 1990, because of how horribly the elephants were treated while acquiring it.
The tusks of an elephant are essentially teeth and deeply set into each side of the elephant’s trunk. They don't just fall out and grow back like hair. They are used like hands (with an elephant favoring the right or left side) to offer protection, carry things, and get food. According to the World Wildlife Fund, even with laws against ivory trade in our country, “poachers kill about 20,000 elephants every single year for their tusks which are then traded illegally in international markets!”
Elephants are already endangered, so we should be protecting them, but they are still being brutally killed to make silly knickknacks and jewelry with their tusks.
Today, there are more alternatives than ever to ivory, offering solutions for better, more beautiful, more ethical jewelry.
Tagua by Soraya Cedeno is an excellent example of a company that puts elephants and the planet first by designing gorgeous jewelry out of innovative, new substitute.
All of the handcrafted, colorful jewelry is made from Tagua nut, the product of a plant grown in Ecuador. Using this special nut helps save elephants and helps heal the rainforests by producing more CO2. The material is organic, non-toxic, and edible right from the ground. The nut pulp forms eye-catching beads of all shapes and sizes, creating the bold, statement-making pieces Tagua is known for.
Caring about the source of your jewelry is important, and brands like Tagua make it easy to do the right thing and look great while doing it!
Explore Tagua online, or see the whole collection in-store at Treasures in Lewes or Long Neck today!
Smithsonian National Museum of African Art
World Wildlife Fund
Tagua by Soraya Cedeno
- Michiko Seto