Friday Future Lister: Abusulu: Empowering Akha Culture through Social Media and Coffee

How Abusulu, led by Suthathip ‘Music’ Saprueanchai, is using social media and coffee to empower Akha culture.

Many may know about Chiang Rai's landscapes, but few experience the daily life of its Akha hill tribe. In this week's Friday Future List, we introduce you to Suthathip ‘Music’ Saprueanchai, also known as Abusulu, who is from Ban Khun Saruay village in Chiang Rai province, where the Akha culture thrives.

Music uses her social media to shed light on the Akha way of life for people to see. Her content shows the symbiotic relationship between the Akha people and nature, portraying pride in her peoples’ way of life.

From Campus to Community: A Journey of Awareness

Music's journey into community empowerment began during her time studying communications at Chiang Mai Rajabhat University. Winning the Popular Vote in the Campus Challenge 2019 for her traffic safety campaign hinted at her knack for creating awareness.

Instead of pursuing a career in the city, she returned to her roots, finding fulfilment in simplicity and sharing the richness of her culture with others. She collaborates with local elders for community development.

Bringing Akha Identity to Social Media

Music’s Akha name is ‘Abusulu.’ ‘Abu’ means little girl and ‘sulu’ means active person. Music utilises TikTok (@abusulu17) and YouTube (@AbusuluSaoakha), meaning ‘Abusulu, an Akha girl’ to narrate her personal experiences as a mountain-dwelling girl from the Akha tribe. Her content shows her daily life and emphasises the Akha identity through her traditional attire, embroidery patterns of cloth, language, and organic farming practices she shows in the video.


Through her social media platforms, she amplifies the voices of Akha, showcasing their resilience, creativity, and wisdom.

Abusulu Coffee: A Taste of Tradition

Inspired by her family's coffee cultivation, Music unexpectedly found herself drawn to the aroma of coffee during a visit to a café two years ago. This newfound appreciation led her to create Abusulu Coffee, using her family's organic produce.


Music's decision to return to Ban Khun Saruay village reflects her desire to be close to family and contribute to community development. By establishing Abusulu Coffee and amplifying Akha culture through social media, she also creates economic opportunities for her community.

Sustainable Development

Abusulu's initiatives are rooted in sustainability, both environmentally and economically. By promoting organic farming practices and ethical sourcing, Music ensures that her community thrives without compromising the natural resources essential to Akha livelihoods. Additionally, the economic opportunities created by Abusulu Coffee provide a stable income for her family, empowering them to support the families while preserving their cultural heritage.


Music uses her online platform and coffee business to bring the Akha community closer to the outside world. She encourages people from various backgrounds to interact with Akha culture, promoting mutual understanding, appreciation, and respect.