In India, there are 125 indigenous as well as exotic species of bamboo . However, more than 50 per cent of the bamboo species grow in the north-eastern regions of India.
This eco-friendly material has been a source of livelihood for many persons from olden times. It is therefore, rightly known as ‘Poor Man’s Timber’.
In the modern times, innovation being the buzzword, bamboo has also been researched and has undergone a series of innovations.
High quality finished products are being made with bamboo by many industries and innovators. With the increase of concerns for the environment and many states issuing a ban on usage of plastic, the approach of manufacturing products with eco-friendly materials are being taken seriously. Therefore, usage of bamboo as a raw material is on a high trend.
Let us see some of the innovative uses of bamboo-
Bamboo As Clothing Material:
Bamboo fibres are used to make varieties of materials like towels, blankets, T-shirts, socks, sweaters, robes etc. It is even used for making babies ‘ clothes, bandages and sanitary napkins. Bamboo fibres are highly used because it is soft, possess anti-microbial properties and is a highly absorbent material. Moreover, clothing materials made from bamboo can be quickly dried. For making bamboo fibres, the bamboo plant is first crushed into a pulp. The bamboo’s natural enzymes are used to form a mushy substance from which fibers can be combed out. These fibers can then be spun into yarn, which is then used as bamboo fabric or linen to make cloth products.
Bamboo As Construction Material:
It is a known fact that bamboo is one of the major materials used for the purpose of construction. Nowadays, bamboo plastic composite materials are used for making floorboards, railings, screens, fences etc. Apart from being a popular modern construction material, bamboo plastic composite is also used for making stationery products, household good etc. Bamboo plastic composite is an environment friendly material mainly composed of bamboo fibres and plastic granules. Finished products made out of bamboo plastic composite materials are high in demand because they require less maintenance, are weather and insect resistant, have good heat and sound insulation properties and are highly durable and recyclable.
Bamboo As Medicine:
Bamboo has a number of medicinal uses. Modern analysis of the bamboo has shown that it contains carbohydrates, fats, protein, calcium, iron, phosphorus, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin and vitamin C. No wonder then, bamboo delicacies of North-East India are so nutritious and are highly adored in many parts of the globe. Bamboo leaves are beneficial for treatment of stomach disorders, promoting digestion. The leaves can also be used by ladies for regulating menstrual periods. Bamboo shoots are also used for treating stomach disorders and are an excellent source of appetizer. Bamboo shoots are used in some parts of Asia in treating respiratory diseases. Bamboo roots were used as a curative for rabies in ancient times. Bamboo is commonly used as an Ayurvedic medicine and has many benefits according to Ayurveda.
Bamboo As Handicraft :
Bamboo is an excellent source that reveals the artistic imagination of many people throughout the world. Innumerable handcrafted items can be created with this eco-friendly material. Apart from the traditional bamboo handicrafts of the cottage industry, bamboo accessories like jewellery, bags, purses are widely used to make a fashion statement. Popular and portable bamboo items like combs, photo frames, soap cases are quite the rage today with the word ‘eco-friendly’ becoming the in-word of the 21st century.
Bamboo is indeed a valuable resource and a blessing for aspiring entrepreneurs because this is the material they can use to weave their ideas and create success stories tomorrow in media to inspire future generations.
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