December 5, 2023

BANGUED, Abra – The Philippine Textile Research Institute (PTRI) of the Department of Science and Technology said it is working with the Abra State Institute of Science and Technology (Asist) to build a permanent bamboo textile hub in the province.

In a press conference, DOST-PTRI Director Julius Leano Jr. said the bamboo textile hub, which broke ground at the Asist main campus in Lagangilang, will house equipment for bamboo fiber extraction.

“At least we are starting to complete the supply chain. So later on, the goal is we produce our own yarn, our own thread that we use for weaving. That is why we are starting to produce our own materials,” Leano said at the sidelines of the Regional Science, Technology and Innovation Week (RSTIW) program last week.

“There will be a splitting machine and mechanical softening machine that will treat the fibers so that what will come out of the facility will be treated fiber,” he said, adding that local experts will be trained for the bamboo project.

He said the facility aims to locally produce yarns to substitute imported ones.

“Woven products maintain their good market price when the raw materials used are of high quality and not just polyester. You know that it is a work of the hand, a cultural work of art but with cheap materials, it also loses its price,” he said.

Leano said a pole of bamboo is worth the same as a just kilo of bamboo fiber extract, at P200, which could open up a huge income-generating potential for the community.

“We will continue to assist bamboo weavers to make sure that the quality of the bamboo fiber they will produce will be within the standard required to make a thread, bridging the hub with the thread production,” he said.

Other agencies like the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the local government units can also be involved in the bamboo planting.

“We also want to plant our own to avoid depleting the bamboo plants which are also being used in other products like handicraft items,” he added.

Known to produce quality bamboo crafts, Abra came up with the “Kawayan Festival” held every first quarter of the year to celebrate the abundance of the resource that naturally grows in the 27 towns of this province. – PNA