All Ethnotek bags are proudly and responsibly made in Vietnam. Our workshop is based in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam and is powered by thirty awesome and highly skilled humans. We do all design, prototyping, material management, molding, stamping, cutting, sewing and fulfillment under one roof.
We work hard together and play hard together! Often times, weekends and holiday time off are spent together, goofing around, exploring the outdoors, sharings beers and food and getting into all sorts of mischief. Pictured above are Ethnotek's head of production, Ai, print and packaging guru, Bao and founder & head designer, Jake.
Please meet Ai, (pictured above). Jake and Ai have been developing bags together since 2007 and are the secret spice behind our bag designs. Ai has a vast knowledge of soft goods manufacturing and insanely good attention to detail. In the early days, Ai convinced his team and suppliers to accept orders from Jake with no minimum order quantities, unlike every other factory we talked to. Simply because he believed in our mission and loved the idea of Ethnotek. When meeting people, Ai refers to us as his "special bag company". We couldn't do what we do without this man. He has been incredibly patient and flexible and has treated us to more dinners and beers than we can count. We love Mr. Ai and his team!
Our sewing workers are paid a wage that is 81% higher than the minimum for sewing workers in Vietnam. Each worker is provided with two weeks paid holiday time off, maternity leave, health insurance, unemployment benefits, social security and travel & food stipend. With all benefits included, our workers are paid 142% more than minimum wage for sector 1 industry standard (according to the VN Ministry of Labor). The average age of our crew is 24 and it's roughly 70% women and 30% men. The crew also do many team sports, go on trips and celebrate birthdays, weddings and personal achievements together.
Our plastic buckles, hardware, zippers, and webbing also comply with REACH standards. Phthalate compounds are the biggest concern for REACH. This compound mostly exists in plastic hardware and PVC backed fabrics, which we don’t use.
Our print supplier for packaging and hangtags produces for some of the most well-known brands in the world and meet A-01 classification, the highest standard possible for toxicity compliance.
Ethnotek owners Jake & Cori have lived in Vietnam for 8 years, 5 of which, were spent launching and nurturing the Ethnotek brand. They are originally from Minnesota, USA, but definitely, consider Vietnam their 2nd home. They now live and work in Bali, Indonesia, with trips back to visit the VN crew every 2-4 months. We're so proud of our small and powerful design and manufacturing crew. These are the smiling faces behind your bag.