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Bago silk industry prospers under OISCA
24
Jul '08
Silk production under Organization for Industrial, Spiritual and Cultural Advancement (OISCA) - Bago Training Center in Negros Occidental, is flourishing because its high production helps farmers meet the growing local demand for silk.

The organization confirmed that average production is touching 200 to 300 kilos per month which is sufficient to supply the monthly local demand of between 200 and 400 kilos.

While earlier it became difficult to complete orders of 150 to 200 kilos, the entity now has enough silk yarn in stock to fulfil any amount of order. A major part of the production is bought by buyers in Panay and from Iloilo, Kalibo, Palawan and Manila.

Thelma Watanabe, President of Negros Mayu and Silk Corporation told Fibre2fashion that "OISCA international is an NGO founded and based in Japan but extends help to developing countries mostly in Asia and the Pacific with agriculture as its main thrust.

Here in Bago city, the community development activities at OISCA-bago training center includes training young people interested in farming, providing scholarship program, supporting day care center program of the city, reforestation, youth exchange program and livelihood, especially for farmers."

Ms Thelma further added, “Silk production is the biggest project for the livelihood of our marginal farmers. Started in 1989, it has become one of the most important industries of our province and nearly 90 percent of our produce goes to the traditional weavers of Aalibo, Aklan in neighboring Panay island where they incorporate it with their indigenous pineapple fibers to come up with a cloth that is ideal for barongs (the philippines' national costume), gowns and ladies' dresses.

Furthermore, random testing of our cocoons at the testing center in Japan yielded very good and encouraging results as to the competitive quality of our produce. This paved the way for the project spreading out to more farmers in adjacent villages."

"Indeed, the future of the Philippine silk industry is very promising.” Ms Thelma asserted.

OISCA – Bago Training Center situated in Brgy also has its own silkworm breeding station which was inaugurated in August last year. As a consequence, it need not import silkworm eggs from Japan. Besides the organization also develops special silkworm cocoons that are disease-resistance.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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