In September, Tom Bedell participated in the World Forestry Congress in Durban, South Africa. As the only attending guitar company, of which all have fallen reliant on the world's' challenged forests, his message hit a strong chord with many of the 3,200 attendees. “Clearly sovereign governments and consumer products companies relying on our forests must take the responsibility to STOP deforestation,” announced Bedell, Founder of Bedell Guitars. “In the end, the survival of our hardwood and rainforests is far more essential than consuming them in our products. Besides, we can craft incredible musical instruments while honoring our forests and the people, cultures and economies that have lived among them for centuries.”
The pathway is becoming easier and far more reliable. New developing technologies facilitate monitoring the harvest of challenged species and their chain of custody. This is not governmental overreach. Instead, it is a moral and ethical obligation to invest in partnering with the organizations that are pioneering DNA verification, satellite monitoring, and economic and cultural alternatives. This will enable plans and conservation cooperatives to commit to reforestation!
One of the strong messages Tom Bedell left the World Forestry Congress feeling is that focus needs to be on the future and giving HOPE in the framework of solutions. Solutions that require musical instrument companies to REFUSE to use illegally harvested trees; to REFUSE to use woods that threaten the sustainability not only of endangered species but eco-systems. The musical instrument business can make a substantial impact. Music has a broad reach. Unity with suppliers, craftsmen, and musicians to commit to reforestation alongside efforts to slow deforestation is key. It can be done!