Changing Strategies In Marketing Kenya'S Tourist Art: From Ethnic Brands To Fair Trade Labels
This article explores recent changes in Kenya's curio or handicrafts industry. In addition to a crisis in access to raw materials and a diversifying tourist market, the rise in the use of cell phones and the Internet during the early 2000s present unique challenges. Nonetheless, innovative Kenyan entrepreneurs are using these challenges to market and brand products in new ways—by representing modern global interconnectedness as “fair trade” or creatively promoting the authenticity of their products in other ways. Kenya's artisans and traders have also adapted to diverse and complex tastes beyond the desire for an invented tradition of ethnic and “tribal” art.