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BackSociety » Hanoi's Traditional Chicken Feather Duster Vendors Feel Pain of Mass-Produced Competition

Cheap, mass-produced dusters are putting Hanoi's traditional chicken feather duster vendors under financial pressure.

AFP reports that individuals who make and sell old-fashioned chicken feather dusters are being squeezed as people turn to more affordable synthetic products purchased from stores.

Nguyen Huy Tho, a Hanoi native whose family has been making feather dusters for over 100 years, told the news source, "We don't earn as much money as we could in other jobs, but I do this job to keep my family tradition alive."

Tho's five sisters followed a different path, taking jobs as office workers or teachers.

The vendor once earned around US$350 a month selling dusters, AFP shares, but his profits have fallen by a third recently.

Tho's grandfather, Nguyen Duy He, explained, "Most people now think about earning good money, but this job is tedious, like making a toothpick."

It takes around two hours to make one duster and they are sold on the street for roughly US$7.

Thanks to the rising popularity of mass-produced dusters, only about 10 families in Trieu Khuc village, a traditional hub for duster-making, still pursue the trade, the news source adds.

Nguyen Minh Quang, another vendor, cycles 50 kilometers into central Hanoi every day to sell his dusters even though sales have dropped.

"Now that there are plastic dusters in the market, fewer traditional feather dusters are sold," he lamented to AFP. "I don't get much money selling them, and I get really tired cycling to Hanoi every day.

[Photo via Yahoo News]


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