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Miriti artifacts (Mauritia flexuosa L. f.) in Abaetetuba, Pará State, Brazil: from production to marketing

Author(s): Ronize da Silva Santos | Marlia Coelho-Ferreira

Journal: Boletim do Museu Paraense Emílio Goeldi : Ciências Humanas
ISSN 1981-8122

Volume: 6;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 559;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: Miriti | Basketry | Handicraft | Riverine communities | Abaetetuba

The palm tree Mauritia flexuosa L. f. (Miriti) provides the raw materials to basketry and toys, with economic and cultural significance to Amazon estuary communities. This paper surveyed the production and marketing of panniers and miriti toys in Abaetetuba, State of Pará, Brazil. The research was conducted in the riverine hamlet of Cutininga and in two craftsmen associations of Abaetetuba city, with semi-structured and non-structured interviews, totalizing 18 informants. Among marketed basketry items, panniers were the only products consistently sold, providing a steady flow of income for the residents of Cutininga. The commercialization of miriti toys has made increasing headway each year, with peak production and sales during October, on the occasion of the religious festival of the Círio de Nossa Senhora de Nazaré. Both toys and panniers have made their mark in the commercialization of craftwork. The miriti toys, made from Mauritia flexuosa L. f. fronds, have higher economic value for the county of Abaetetuba as a whole. Yet, for the community of Cutininga, panniers have a higher marketing value.

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