Eastern Africa Bamboo Project  
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Eastern Africa Bamboo Project
Funded by
Executed By
Supervised by
Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development
Federal Micro and Small Enterprise Development Agency

Kenya Forestry Research Institute, KEFRI

The potential that bamboo products offer to promote income generation at national and local levels has long been known amongst stakeholders in many of the countries of the world. Studies of the bamboo sectors in Ethiopia and Kenya during 1999-2001, funded by INBAR and local institutions and conducted by national experts, have identified a wide range of differing production-to-consumption systems, and pinpointed possible interventions that would promote the production and trade of bamboo products. In general production and consumption of bamboo and bamboo products in Eastern Africa is very limited, and the value addition imparted by such limited processing as exists presently is minimal. There are many indigenous and traditional uses of bamboo in the region, but these are of low value addition and are usually for subsistence use by the producers. Approximately 80% of the population of Eastern Africa relies on agriculture activities to make a living, and poverty is rife.

The long-term objective of the project is to promote the development of the sustainable production and use of bamboo products in East African countries, with a focus on markets as the driving force behind such sectoral development. The project will contribute to the reduction of poverty in rural, degraded and marginalized areas by turning bamboo -the ”poor man’s timber”- into a cash crop for wood substitution and for food processing creating rural and urban employment and value-addition to ultimately improve the economy of LDC’s.

The project will do this by addressing technical input requirements in present bamboo product production systems to increase quality and value, by the development of new products with large sustainable markets, by providing increased access to markets for producers and by enabling more equitable sharing of benefits amongst stakeholders. Supports to ensure long term sustainability of the options trialled will be developed, and to promote greater dissemination of the results. Options trialled in one location can then be replicated in other locations as part of the project and models produced for replication outside the project.

The specific objectives of the project are targeting employment and income generation for poverty alleviation and sustainable development through:

- Improving the technological and skills inputs in bamboo processing,
- Developing capacity for the sustainable supply of raw bamboo materials,
- Improving technical, functional and aesthetic aspects of products to diversify into new markets.  



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Training was given to Local Bamboo Growers....

The Eastern Africa Bamboo Project (Ethiopia) provided a training for Local Bamboo Growers and Agricultural Experts in West Gojjam, Ethiopia

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Important Links

» Common Fund for Commodities

» United Nations Industrial Development Organization

» International Network for Bamboo and Rattan

» Micro and Small Enterprises Development Agency (FeMSEDA)

» Institute of Biodiversity Conservation

» Bamfox Manufacturer and Exporter of Bamboo Flooring




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