Farmers to Benefit From Bamboo Fraternity

Moses Gahigi

Kigali — Rwandan farmers have been fronted as

a priority group to benefit from a bamboo planting

fraternity spearheaded by the International Network

for Bamboo and Rattan (INBAR).

This was revealed early last week by the visiting

INBAR Director General, J. Coosje Hoogendoorn,

who said that Rwanda has all it takes to gain

from the immense environmental

and economic benefits of bamboo trees.

Bamboo is one of the most productive and

fastest growing plants on earth and it offers

the possibility of annual selective harvesting

and removal of about 15-20 percent

of the total stock productivity.

Over 90 percent of bamboo carbon can be

sequestered in durable products such

as boards, floors, furniture, buildings,

cloth, paper and charcoal.

Bamboo trees play an important role

in controlling soil erosion, which is one

of the most outstanding problems

faced by farmers in Rwanda.

According to Hoogendoorn, INBAR

is partnering with China to provide

the capacity for bamboo processing.

She said INBAR is looking at conserving

the already existing bamboo trees as well

as introducing new species.

INBAR has a membership of 34 countries

and Rwanda is its current chairman.

Fredrick Munyansonga, the official charged

with bamboo planting in the forestry department,

revealed that this partnership is likely

to change lives of many people especially farmers.

"Bamboo planting has two inherently

important causes, conserving the soil

and alleviating poverty.

This cause should be taken seriously

because it's a total win-win undertaking," he said.

Around 1.5 billion people around the world depend

on bamboo in some way.

INBAR is an inter-governmental organization

established in 1997 with a role of finding and

demonstrating innovative ways of using bamboo

and rattan to alleviate poverty

and protect environments.

China is one of the world's leading countries benefiting

from bamboo production and processing.

It's also consumed as food sometimes.

             J-L K.
Procurement Consultant
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