Photos - Vietnam > Mai Chau Part 4 - Chop Stick Factory
While on our motor bike tour, we stopped to see a chopstick factory. They use the word factory to describe a structure that produces a product for sale around the world; their factories are just on a smaller scale.
The factory, way off in the mountains where bamboo is plentiful.
Rolls of chopsticks. It is very difficult to describe how they are made,
There is a fellow out where John is, his job is to saw the bamboo down into bite size pieces and then in half so it is ready for the gentleman in the blue shirt...not John!
They stack them up and they have staff that continually brings these halves to the fellow who cuts them into chopsticks.
He is putting the half bamboo in front of a square blade that cuts them into the shape of a chopstick. He works very fast; one miss and his fingers would go into the chopstick pile.
They move with precision, he cannot hesitate when he is pushing the bamboo into the blade, one after the other, so fast you almost miss some of them going into the blade.
The chopsticks go through a bamboo tube into the trough.
She collects the chopsticks and puts them on her board where she shapes them into a round.
They are in the little cubicle which helps her create a circle of chopsticks.
Once the pile is big enough she ties it and with the red plastic ties and then she has to sit the pile on its edge and she puts in more chop sticks until you think she can’t put one more in and that is when she takes her mallets and pounds the chopsticks into the round.
The finished product ready to be carried to the large pile of rounds of chopsticks.
We watched her carry it to the pile that will be picked up for shipping throughout Vietnam and other countries.
And then we watched John pick one up...his face says it all, he was surprised how heavy the rounds were. These young women are extremely strong; they have to be doing this type of work all day.