The production of abaca fibre during the first quarter of the ongoing year, has witnessed a negative trend with a drop of 17.8 percent, due to fall in prices at farm level.
Abaca fibre manufacturing during the period January-March, stood at 102,417.6 bales of 125 kilograms, according to the Fiber Industry Development Authority (FIDA).
Only, the Zamboanga Peninsula had registered positive trend in abaca fibre manufacturing, during the reviewed period, among all the other abaca-manufacturing provinces in the country, reveal FIDA figures.
The Bicol region, which is recognized as the country's key abaca fibre manufacturing region, experienced 7.4 percent production fall registering 39,140.7 bales in Q1 of this year and accounted for just 38.2 percent of the total production.
In addition to this, Eastern Visayas also produced low volume of abaca fibres accounting for only 26.2 percent of the country's overall abaca fibre production in the first quarter. As per FIDA figures, manufacturing in this region slipped down steeply by 21.9 percent to 26,856 bales.
On the other hand, exports of abaca fibre grew leaps and bounds by 308 percent to 23,085.4 bales. According to FIDA, this shipment improvement is due to revival in demand for this fibre in the developed countries such as UK and Japan.
The United Kingdom shipments soared up by 500 percent to 12,965 bales during January-March of 2010, compared to 2,160 bales produced during the same period, last year. Moreover, these fibres have been witnessing an increase in demand from Japan, which has soared by 316.9 percent to 6,579 bales.
Around 56.2 percent of the overall abaca fibre exports were shipped to UK and 28.5 percent to Japan during Q1 of the current year. Abaca is a kind of fibre which has innumerable applications. Blend of this fibre with silk, piña or polyester, produces high-end fabrics and handmade paper such as art media and decoratives.
Fibre2Fashion News Desk - India