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The Brutal side of Beauty

At Art Cafe Bumbu Bali, we are committed to supporting the Sulphur Porters of Kawah Ijen in East Java. We believe that their contribution to the beauty and economy of this special part of Indonesia deserves recognition and care. Our team works tirelessly to engage with the local community and raise awareness about the hardships these porters face each day. If you would like to get involved in our efforts to support these hard-working individuals, reach out to us today.


The journey starts with a comfortable 3.8 km hike up the slop of a volcano to the rim of the crater. Next follows an almost 175 meters vertical drop down into the steaming, smoking gut of the volcano. The porters then need to protect their faces with mostly a wet rug and step right into the poisonous fumes and chip out blocks of the hardened sulfur with which they fill two baskets weighting each about 35-40 kg. A bamboo stick then connects the basket and the porters carry the load back up to the rim of the volcano and  then almost 4 kilometers down to the collection point. The entire journey for one load takes approximately 5 hours for which the porters receives 800 Rupiahs (7 cent US) per kilogram.


The mathematics

One porter makes two trips daily,  and this six days in a row,  and then has to rest for one week.


800 Rupiahs per kg x 70 = Rp.56’000

2 loads a day = Rp.112’00

All this hard work for less then = US$ 10 a day


Average life expectation 45 years


Java - Kawah Ijen 6.JPG
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