Green Gold: From kitchen utensils to cosmetics and speakers, bamboo is increasingly becoming part of modern living and sustainability practices | Lifestyle news

The World Bamboo Organization observes September 18 as World Bamboo Day, holding workshops, advocacy programmes, agricultural campaigns, handicraft exhibitions, etc. in an effort to spread awareness about the environmental, economic and cultural importance of bamboo. Bamboo.

Bamboo, known as “green gold”, contributes to local economic development by being an essential raw material in small-scale industries. It is used in pickles Square In cultural symbols such as the jabi hats of Assam and the perfect paper, bamboo is widely used in India, especially in the northeastern plains of central India and the southern states.

India is the second largest producer of BambooMore than 136 different species are cultivated on an area of ​​approximately 14 million hectares. The National Bamboo Mission encourages and supports the cultivation and use of bamboo in major industries. In 2017, the Government of India amended the Forest Act, 1927 to remove bamboo from the category of “trees” to make it more accessible to local communities and self-help groups engaged in bamboo-based livelihoods. The amendment also made it easier to plant and cultivate.

Modern life and green entrepreneurship

Momo bamboo baskets. (Credit: Swasthi Bhasuri)

Used to make traditional bansori flutes, baskets for harvesting and gathering produce, and canopies for modern-day “living bamboo bridges,” this futuristic fiber is also called poor man’s wood with wide applications in various industries such as agriculture, construction and handicrafts.

Toothbrushes, water bottles, tongs, trays, dishware, momo baskets, kitchen utensils and jewelry are popular eco-crafts made from bamboo. Some modern sustainable examples of natural/green enterprises include white birch bamboo spoons and forks, pen holders, bags, folders, and bamboo murals.

The recently concluded G20 summit in New Delhi showcased bamboo handicrafts from various parts of the country. “The bamboo handicrafts have been a huge success as decoration and in the handicraft bazaar of the G20 meeting,” says Shri Manatosh Naha, Officer-in-Charge of Purbasha Tripura Government Handicraft Store. “The bamboo handicrafts were bought by international and national delegates. Many small antiques, lamps and other decorations were made from bamboo.” Large items and products are difficult to carry, so souvenirs and handicrafts were very popular during the three-day summit.

Some popular products were Environmentally friendly Ganpati idols, paintings, fans, masks and lamps are made of bamboo and its leaves. “Meghalayan Age” store showcased unique bamboo products at the G20 Handicraft Bazaar. Among the delegates, bamboo-decorated earthenware and ceramic vessels, ethnic lamps and “dragon bamboo trays” were the most popular. “We can sell goods worth more than Rs 1 lakh during the three-day fair,” said a store representative.

Among other products, eco-friendly bamboo bracelets made from seeds and Irie silk, bamboo pillows, and bamboo candlesticks were popular. Bamboo mats, musical instruments, pen holders and laptop stands were also purchased by the delegates at the international event.

Recently, the innovative non-electrical bamboo speaker – which serves as a mobile phone holder and a natural music speaker – has also been growing in popularity. These products are sold in G20 Bazaar and are also available in various local hats and bazaars. Premlata and Nisha, representatives from Dilli Haat, INA, are selling these speakers for Rs 450 and are quick to prove the effectiveness of the eco-friendly speakers by playing songs on their mobile phones. The bamboo speakers here carry the G20 branding as well.

In 2019-20, Kunsam Romesh Singh from Imphal, Manipur won the Outstanding Craftsman of the Year award for designing a unique mobile phone tripod using bamboo.

Ethical fashion

Bamboo mural. (Credit: Swasthi Bhasuri)

Likewise, bamboo water and extracts, makeup brushes and palettes (made entirely from bamboo), are eco-friendly. Bamboo packaging They are increasingly used in the cosmetic industry. This year, the Kerala Forest Research Institute (KFRI) is organizing various bamboo-themed workshops and fashion shows. It is also increasingly used in incense making, apart from its traditional use in making incense sticks as well as ice cream sticks.

Green infrastructure

Eco-friendly bracelets made from bamboo. (Credit: Swasthi Bhasuri)

Thanks to new technologies such as bamboo cement frame technology, bamboo is rapidly gaining importance in sustainable architecture and construction. Many hotels and resorts around the world have treehouses, huts and bamboo huts. Bamboo groves are also often used to green cities, thus enhancing biodiversity and the environment. Many organizations are facilitating “bamboo building workshops” to achieve its resilience and sustainability.

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The first bamboo industrial park in the North-East was set up at Mandirdisa village in Dima Hasao district of Assam in a bid to encourage its industrial use. Initiatives like Arunachal Pradesh government offices procuring bamboo furniture for panchayat bhavans and local offices are excellent for enhancing local livelihoods. Earlier this year, the G20 meeting in Mizoram – held ahead of the G20 summit – had bamboo as its theme. Lengpui Airport at Aizwal in Mizoram also has a bamboo theme.

The way forward

Bamboo music speaker without electricity. (Credit: Swasthi Bhasuri)

With a wide range of applications, bamboo contributes to sustainability and the life or lifestyle of the environment. Bamboo plantations are also beneficial in soil conservation, promoting green energy, and generally mitigating climate change. Increasingly, agroforestry and cultivation of bamboo with other crops like turmeric, ginger etc. are being done in barren lands to conserve and protect the soil. Its modern applications will also enhance the income of small industries and self-help groups.

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First published on: 18-09-2023 at 12:30 IST

(tags for translation) World Bamboo Organization

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