In 2014, I started working on a community development project in Desa Les, North Bali. Outside my room are 20 salt flats where the farmers begin work before dawn, drawing water from the ocean and then filtering it to make organic sea salt. At that time, they were selling their salt for Rp 3,000/kilo (about 25 cents US). I offered to purchase it from them for Rp 5,000/kilo (about 40 cents US) and then resold it to restaurants in the Ubud area, where I live most of the time. Now the salt costs me Rp 10,000/kilo and I sell it for Rp 20,000/kilo. My staff at home re-dehydrate the salt as if packaged straight from Desa Les, it weeps in the bags. We deliver to the Ubud eateries on Mondays and every Galungan holiday (every 210 days) I bring the profits to the farmers and divide it equally. Up to now (April 2018) the farmers have received around US $8,000 total in profits. Aside from selling to restaurants and individuals, we also make small gift bags and sell these for Rp 25,000 to visitors.
Cat Wheeler and Wayan Manis are in charge of the gift bags; Di Rowling designed the logo and the gift bag tag; Christine Foster helped with the initial logo. Sam Brown set up the website and Rosalind Robinson maintains it. Gung Biang Setiawati, Bu Komang and Pak Ketut Sana are the salt dryers and delivery persons. It is a community effort!
For photographs and more information, please go to http://saltofthesea.weebly.com.