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Sri Lankan govt promotes banana fibre industry
Mar '11
The Sri Lankan Government has launched a program to promote cottage industries in the country. Under this program, various items will be produced using fiber extracted from the stems of the banana trees. As the stem of the banana plant is wasted, this new program will encourage its use for industrial production.

This program has been implemented by the Ministry of Traditional Industries and Small Enterprises Development and sponsored by the UNDP. The Indian High Commission in Sri Lanka provides assistance to implement this program.

In Sri Lanka, more than 52,000 hectares of land is used for banana cultivation commercially. In addition to that, banana plantation is a household activity on small scale too.

The commercial plantation of banana takes place mainly in 8 districts. Out of these 8 districts, Jaffna, Ampara, and Ratnapura districts have been selected to implement the project on pilot basis. After successful implementation of the pilot project, the program will be extended to other districts.

Announcing the program in Colombo, the Secretary to the Ministry of Traditional Industries and Small Enterprises Development Mr. V.Sivagnanasothy said that they had already received nearly 150 applications from Jaffna only, making it a huge success.

He told that, small groups would be trained by Indian experts on the extraction and production of value added items under this program. He added that those trainees would train others keeping the process on.

The Indian experts informed about the products made using the banana fiber. It covers a whole range of twines, paper products, handicrafts, wall hangings, utility items, brushes, fabrics and even laminated roofing material.

They explained that the fiber can be extracted through chemical extraction, mechanical extraction and manual extraction from the stems of the banana trees.

They exhibited products like shawls, handicraft items, fibers, door mats and souvenirs made exclusively using banana fiber.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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