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Prabhu asks agri min to set up research project for bamboo sector development

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New Delhi:  Former union minister Suresh Prabhu has asked Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar to set up an All India Coordinated Research Project (AICRP) on bamboo with a view to promote the growth of the sector.

Prabhu launched an independent India Bamboo Forum (IBF) last month with an aim to give a boost to the bamboo sector by promoting entrepreneurship, research, and trade of high quality bamboo products in a sustainable manner.

In a letter to Tomar, Prabhu said that the forum is working with different stakeholders, policy makers and industry to identify specific thematic areas of the states and national ecosystems that require resolution.

There is a need for a comprehensive bamboo resource database for the development of bamboo applications particularly for value-chain development, he said.

“In this connection, formulation of an All India Coordinated Research Project (AICRP) on bamboo under Indian Council of Agriculture Research (ICAR), under the agriculture ministry, would make the production, development, movement and tracking of bamboo convenient by many fold throughout the country,” Prabhu has said.

The AICRP is already in existence for several crops including banana and spices.

Sanjeev Karpe, one of the conveners of IBF, said, “We are requesting ICAR to study cost determining factors for sustainable market of bamboo raw material and bottlenecks between demand and supply chain and also to study sector specific primary processing and utilisation for zero wastage of bamboo raw material.”

About 2.5 billion people in the world depend economically on bamboo, and international trade in bamboo is estimated at about USD 4.5 million per year.

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