Concept on Bamboo Industry Development in Mindanao
Global situation is facing a number of problems to which bamboo could provide a partial solution. There is a near certainty of wood shortage in the near future. Compounding that is the withdrawal from wood production of forests for conservation reasons. The world population is becoming more urbanized. When employment is provided in rural areas there is a wish that it should have the appropriate scale and adequate local participation in decision-making.
Philippines had suffered tremendous effect of the triple typhoon plus the Low Pressure area that leaves part of the Luzon coastal towns and areas near the lake to be submerged in water until Christmas. These areas had just recovered from typhoon “Reming” and “Sendong” when “Habagat” sits on them. Visayas had been shattered with earthquakes and flashfloods. Moreover, almost every part of the Philippines was suffering from nature’s vendetta. Mindanao, being an isolated part of the country, almost spared from the Gaia’s wrath, it was also isolated from developmental support. It keeps being a reigning “Land of Promise”.
Thus, to have a partial impact on these problems, a solution is needed that has the following characteristics; 1.) A product can be produced that substitutes for wood in the widest range of uses. 2.) The production of that product has positive environmental impacts. 3.) The product can be made in a rural environment to assist in reducing the pressure of urbanization. 4.) The scale of production should be such that rural people are not displaced by it and can participate meaningfully in the activity.
Industry Development based on bamboo can definitely provide part of the answer. Bamboo products do substitute widely for wood-based products. Bamboo is an easy plant to propagate and can be grown in small clumps on fallowed land on farms. Bamboo farming therefore has the appropriate scale for people’s involvement. Bamboo is friendlier to the environment than many agricultural high value crops. Bamboo industries moreover can be created at craft and artisan level with maximum community involvement and relatively low to zero capital requirements. Bamboo based industries can therefore provide the time and space for evolutionary development of the rural economy.
Learning from the terrain of Mindanao which has two large catch basins which are Agusan Marsh in Caraga Region and the largest, Liguawasan Marsh in Central Mindanao are holding the torrential rainwater from two elevated areas formed by volcanoes, namely the Mt. Apo in Kidapawan City and the Mt. Kitanglad in Bukidnon Province. The two marshes are rich with freshwater fish and the surrounding flatland is the rice bowl of Mindanao. The forests are gone and the precipitation can’t be hold long by banana hemp and high value crops, flooding in lowlands is a perennial problem, devastating the staple food -rice. Bamboo is foreseen as the solution for the high value crops does not contain the problem, none the less, it worsen the environmental situation and promising farmers with false hope.
The term “sustainable industry” refers not only to environmental issues, but also covers economical and social issues The sustainability value of bamboo industries is assessed based on a definition of “sustainable industry”, from which strategies for improvement of sustainable bamboo products are proposed. These tribulations could somehow be deciphered partially by planting bamboo and looking for possibility of greater market expanse. Pre-fab housing in western countries and in Japan are most preferred and the European Market is going for green materials e.g. bamboo and other renewable materials.
A 30 years old precision designing company, TCN Technote Ltd. Co., owned and managed by Engr. Aki Tsuji, from the bustling city of Hamamatsu in Shizouka-ken, the birthplace of Suzuki, Honda and Yamaha, is coming to Philippines, more particularly in Kidapawan City, the most central part of Mindanao, will bring 12 sets of high precision machines to process Engineered Bamboo from the bamboo stand of Mindanao. This was made possible from the correspondence of Dr. Masaru Imada, a retired General Manager of Meiji Co. Ltd of Japan, the giant confectionary company which manufactures world famous chocolates and nougats.
Being a Mechanical Engineer by profession, Aki Tsuji was able to build and design a bamboo glider and borrowed aeronautical ideas from his uncle Miki Tadanao, who designed Yokosuka P1Y Ginga (“Frances”) attack bomber and the kamikaze (Cherry Blossoms) warplanes of the World War II. After the war, his uncle invented the famous Shinkansen (Bullet Train) which is made of lightweight alloys and derived the aerodynamic design of a plane. Aki and his Team Oceanman eventually bagged the championship trophy last 2007 for his bamboo glider flew a distance of 153.1 meters.
Last 2007, Engr. Aki Tsuji started to conduct series of test with bamboo and he had successfully composed thin sheets of bamboo veneers. He believed that bamboo will replace strong alloys and can be utilized in various ways, according to Tsuji Aki, which most of the time, invents the machine in developing the production process of engineered bamboo. He eventually produced thin sheets of bamboo veneers manufactured from his invented veneering machine.
Engr. Tsuji Aki is having a vision of employing 10,000 Mindanaoans when year 2017 comes and onward. This would probably lessen the poverty rate in a very dramatic way. The domino effect of the development he would be bringing in Mindanao will bear its mark in the future, the passion for the environment and the selfless living in this world. TCN Bamboo Incorporated will produce and export bamboo based products of pre-fab housing materials, ply boards, planks, panels, home furnishings and furniture. Sales and machine designing will also be one of the main business activity and other allied services which bespeak bamboo.