The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has extended P1.56 million worth of grant to producers of skewers in San Juan, Ilocos Sur for the purchase of bamboo machineries aimed at increasing their production.
The DOST Regional Office I (DOST-I) through its Provincial Science and Technology Center–Ilocos Sur (PSTC-IS) provided the grant totalling P1,562,000 to Lapog Harvester SLP Association.
PSTC-IS Officer-in-Charge Engr. Jordan L. Abad said the grant will be used to procure bamboo splitters, bamboo width and thickness slicer, stick length cutter, bamboo slicer, and the stick polishing machine.
“This project will support the association not only to produce bamboo sticks but also to produce engineered bamboo products in the future,” he said in a statement on Monday, June 21.
He said the initiative will not only upgrade the production capabilities of skewer producers, but will also boost the bamboo industry in the community and in the province as a whole.
It will provide technical assistance for local bamboo producers resulting in employment generation and increased income, Abad added.
The DOST-I will jointly implement the project with the local government of San Juan, Ilocos Sur that has already committed counterpart aid in terms of the construction of the production building for the association.
During the awarding ceremony, House Deputy Speaker and Ilocos Sur 1st district Rep. Deogracias Victor B. Savellano said, “this project will be a great help for the skewer producers to achieve sustainable production, economic empowerment and ultimately improve living condition of local bamboo players and I want them to develop a toothpick as an additional product line.”
Savellano serves as vice chairperson of the Philippine Bamboo Industry Development Council (PBIDC).
The DOST-I noted that the project is part of Savellano’s congressional initiative seeking to assist skewer producers in Barangay Barbar towards mechanizing their production.
Savellano hailed the DOST for leading the implementation of the project.
Among those who attended the awarding ceremony were Cresensio G. Valle, Sangguniang Bayan Member who represented Mayor Elaine A. Sarmiento, Brgy. Captain Martin P. Jimenez; Analiza U. Vivit, president of the association; provincial staff of DOST, Savellano’s staff , and Barbar barangay officials.