The Indian Tussah Silk moth (Antherea myllita): was traditionally reeled from cocoons collected from the wild but the yields were poor. Tassah silk production underwent a revival with better training for rearers, reelers and weavers provided by PRADAN, an Indian NGO. They improved the supply with disease free eggs and provided training on silkworm rearing. They also planted and pruned food trees for the caterpillars on privately-owned lands and kept the caterpillars on trees protected under netting. The Tussah moth is one of the only moth who exit its cocoon by pushing its way out of the top without breaking the single thread that made the cocoon. It is for this reason that rearer's would wait until the moth hatched before they gathered in the harvest of tussah silk cocoons. The tussah moth does not come to any harm in this process and is able to go on and live its full but short lifecycle. The silk that is then unwound from the cocoon by reelers (pictured) onto purpose made reel's ready for spinning (pictured) and then onto weaving. This form of farming has led to Tussah silk being known as 'non - violent' silk as the caterpillar gets to become a moth and live its full lifecycle.
Take a look at some of our beautiful Tussah silk shawls in our scarves and shawls section in the online shop.