30,000 hectares of bamboo farms eyed in Pangasinan

BAYAMBANG, Pangasinan (PNA) — Some 30, 000 hectares of land in different municipalities of Pangasinan are set to be planted to bamboos soon.

This is part of the integrated bamboo farm and manufacturing industry project of the CS First Green Agri- Industrial Corporation, a private entity that partnered with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) for the agri venture.

Levin Uy, CS First Green president and an incumbent councilor of Bayambang town, said that the project opens great possibilities and opportunities as it is expected to create livelihood and fight poverty.

The initial action subsequent to the signing of memorandum of agreement (MOA) last June 24 by all parties is the acquisition of the required hectares of land in Pangasinan to be allotted for the bamboo plantation that will be the responsibility of the DENR.

Under the MOA, the DTI will provide the needed technology in processing the bamboo into lumber, tile and plywood while the CS First Green will provide funds for the project.

Peter Mangabat, provincial director of DTI Pangasinan disclosed that the venture aims to provide employment while protecting the environment.

“We are now looking for alternatives to the usual lumbers from trees. Aside from the fact that bamboo has many uses, it is also simply replaceable within three to five years unlike with trees where we wait for over five years before they grow”.

The technology of converting bamboo into lumbers and wood started in China where its industry earns to 18 billion a year, said Uy.“We will download that technology and provide the product in domestic market and even for export”, he added.

The six- year project is expected to give employment to farmers in Mangatarem, Aguilar, Bugallon, Labrador, Sual, Mabini and Infanta; the municipalities targeted for land acquisition.

“The farmers in these towns will be hired under contract growing scheme for the planting and harvesting of the bamboos”, said Uy.Mangabat admitted that the bamboo industry in the province has long existed, however, he said the problem lies in the supply requirement.

“We hope that this project will succeed as we see that it will be beneficial to all”, Mangabat said.

The land acquisition will start upon the approval of the DENR secretary. (PNA)