Thursday, September 20, 2012

Agri officer pushes for bamboo farming

..THE bamboo industry in the Philippines can be another good source of livelihood to some local farmers in the next few years with a proper research and support from the government, a city official said on Monday. City Agriculture Office (CAO) officer-in-charge Leonardo Avila III, speaking in the regular Kapehan sa Dabaw at SM City, said to help promote the sector, they are planning to include bamboo in the city's Agro-Industry Program. Avila said this new undertaking came upon knowing that bamboo in China is such a good industry. In fact, bamboo comprises at least 15 percent of the total gross domestic product (GDP) there, which is being regarded as one of the major industries. The CAO head said they will conduct an inventory to find out what area in the city can host bamboo plantations and how big these areas are. Avila said that in China, farmers consider bamboo plantations a regular farming. "It shows the development of bamboo in China is very crucial," Avila said, adding that bamboo plantations in China are so vast that they cover mountainous terrain. Farmers process all parts of the bamboo to produce sub-products such as foods, charcoal, bamboo fiber and even bamboo beer, according to Avila. China is exporting huge volume of its bamboo charcoal to Thailand and its bamboo shoots are being shipped out to Japan. The fast-growing bamboo industry in China is said to be a result of good research, being taken cared of its Ministry of Science and Technology. Avila said domestic market for bamboos alone will be enough to keep the industry going. For instance, he said bamboo poles are very useful in many banana plantations in Davao Region. That alone will keep the industry alive. "Bamboo is also a good source of living in the Philippines only that it has not good planning," Avila said. He added that bamboo industry in the country also has the potential to grow only that it needs a proper research for it to prosper. ..