Bamboo products to get certification soon

Bamboo products to get certification soon

Come March, the bamboo purchased for domestic consumption and export will be certified, said Avani Kumar Verma, co-chair, Network for Certification and Conservation of Forests (NCCF).

Central and various state governments are working towards creating a certification process for large-scale domestic buyers and for exporting bamboo products, by March. The certification will help consumers know the origin of the product and quality, he said.

Verma was replying to the concerns raised by Maharaj K Muthoo, president, Roman Forum, Italy, at the international conference-cum-exhibition on bamboo composites, held in the city on Monday. The meet was organised by the Indian Plywood Industries Research and Training Institute (IPIRTI). 

To reduce greenhouse gas emissions, there is a need to increase the use of bamboo products and bring it to the mainstream. Officials in the state and central government do not seem interested in validating bamboo and its composites, which is a huge resource in the country, Muthoo charged.

Muthoo pointed out that Jammu and Kashmir was the first state to come up with a bamboo working plan. To revive exports, market certification was needed. NCCF started the certification process in 2015, but there had not been much progress, he said.

Verma said NCCF had held meetings with forest officials of various states, ministries of environment and forests, agriculture and industry. All are working towards it. Certification is new to India and so, it is taking time, he added.

Over 13 million hectares of forest is under bamboo cultivation in India, of which two million hectares are in Karnataka. Large areas are under commercial cultivation. Bamboo can eliminate weeds like lantana, which are harmful to forests and increase man-animal conflict.

The conference saw 26 stalls and 127 participants of which 100 were from India and the remaining from 15 other countries.