Tag Archives: local culture

KenPoly, Listen Up

Kenya is a toothpick culture. For those who don’t know what that means, it means that culturally it is perfectly socially acceptable for perform the act of tooth-picking at the dinner table. This is great, because many things we eat here, including delicious mangoes and less delicious various stringy green vegetables, get stuck in your teeth. Toothpicks pick these bits from your teeth! Genius.

Now in Kenya, I have only ever seen wooden toothpicks being used. But in a recent care package, my grandma randomly sent me some fancy plastic toothpicks. These aren’t just any toothpicks though, these are engineered for maximum teeth-picking action. One side is a flatish (as opposed to roundish) pick and the other side is a small bristle-brush. Yes, a bristle brush on a toothpick. The bristles are appropriately shaped so as to allow a back-and-forth movement without causing pain. Genius.

I want KenPoly, the local plastic-goods manufacturer, to make these. And sell them. And make money. And become even more wealthy. Because we need good products to be produced locally to demonstrate that it can be done and subsequently motivate more investment. Because Kenyans want to consume their own culture (music, movies, toothpicks), and have proven that it can become marketable to mass produce local culture… stuff, so let’s mass produce these. Nuts to development. It’s lack of accountability is a joke. I am putting my money on Super Toothpicks.

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