Please feel free to call us at (216) 391-2525 for any product or shipping questions!

The Joseph M. Stern Co. imports most of the raffia that’s available in the United States. We are the go-to supplier for individual waterfowl hunters and hobbyists everywhere.

Our raffia fiber is soft, pliable, strong, durable, easy to dye and biodegradable making it an excellent material for weaving baskets, hats, mats and rugs. A very popular use for it is for hunters to make blinds for camouflage. It is also widely used for agricultural purposes to tie vegetables, plants in vineyards, flowers and floral arrangements. Crafters use the raffia fiber for making doll hair, ribbons, Hawaiian skirts (hula skirts), table skirts and much more. In addition raffia is very popular in the packaging industry and can be used as filler. Raffia is often used as a decorative item for tying a little bow around oil, jam, vinegar, wine bottles, soaps, candles and boxes.

Hi! I’m Randi Elder,

the President of Joseph M. Stern. My Grandfather, Emil Elder, founded the company in 1915, and passed it on to my father, who passed it on to me. I’m the third generation of a proud family business. Welcome to our website and enjoy the wide variety of quality Raffia from Madagascar!

– Randi

What’s Raffia?

Raffia is a fiber that comes from an endemic species of palm tree that grows in natural strands and harvested only in Madagascar (an island located in the Indian Ocean having all the conditions for growing the best raffia in the world).  The main production areas of raffia are located in Majunga Besalampy and Maintirano on the West coast and around Mananjary on the East coast. The raffia harvested on the West coast is soft and wide while the raffia produced on the East coast is soft and rolled.  Raffia comes in a natural, straw like color but can be dyed many colors.  JMS offers 27 different colors of dyed raffia!