Dinalupihan, Bataan, a town which specializes in the manufacture of "sawali" or bamboo mats, was the venue of bamboo training assisted by the DENR's Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau (ERDB) on August 5-6.


The training centered on nursery and plantation technology, and catered to 102 Dinalupihan residents including farmers, local government unit personnel, and 13 Aytas from barangays Payangan and Tubo-Tubo.

Training facilitators and resource persons were Mr. Angelito B. Exconde of DENR-ERDB and Dr. Edmundo B. Baccay of Tarlac College of Agriculture.

"Sawali is our OTOP (one town one product) but our production of bamboo is not widespread yet," said Dinalupihan Mayor Maria Angela Garcia. "Mas maganda kung sa atin galing ang raw materials."

Towards the end, the lady mayor said the town's three ancestral domains of indigenous peoples are potential sites for bamboo nursery. Possible plantation sites of bamboo will also be included in the crafting of the Comprehensive Land Use Plan of Dinalupihan.

The activity is in line with the Bataan Bamboo Industry Development, a collaborative project of the Department of Trade and Industry, DENR, Department of Science and Technology, and other concerned government agencies. Mheda B. Garcia, NGP-PQPM

Note: The term 'Aytas' was agreed upon by the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples and the Aytas several years ago. This is now the preferred name although it is not as widely used as 'Aetas' -- National Scientist Lourdes J. Cruz. Hence, the use of Aytas in this article.