Non-Timber Forest Products Exchange Programme

Exchange News: September 2003 – March 2004

May 28, 2004

Activities and Developments:

1. Regional meeting in Bayabong, the Philippines
Regional Meeting in Bayabong, the Philippines, October 2003.
Main issue: Community NTFP Assessment and Monitoring strategies. The issue (which is quite a mouthful) was chosen, because many of the communities in the EP network do feel a need to better (or more systematically) assess and monitor the NTFP resources in their territories.

As became clear during the meeting, the trigger for this interest varies. Communities may:
Worry about dwindling resources. (e.g. Bastar, India);
Need to prove sustainability in order to attain premium price for their products. (e.g. Rattan farmers East Kalimantan);
Need proper inventories in order to address government requirements (Philippines).
On the sideline of and after the meeting other issues where discussed, such as the future establishment of mahua banks in tribal areas in Central Eastern India, the threat from oil palm plantations in the Philippines, new land allocation legislation in Vietnam and rattan marketing in Kalimantan.

Mary Stockdale of LAPIS, together with Miks of AnthroWatch, facilitated the meeting. Mary is currently preparing a manual based on the discussions in Bayabong. The manual will be released in October 2004.

2. Annual EP Steering Committee meeting
Annual EP Steering Committee meeting, October 2003. The committee has been transformed into EP Board and is now officially registered in the Philippines.

3. Exchange Visits
Immediately after the Regional meeting, the India team (Sneh, Nadji and Madhu) traveled to the island of Palawan, where they were hosted by NATRIPAL. The visit had two objectives: NATRIPAL was seeking advise from the Indian partners for the improvement of their honey processing unit, while ‘India’ wanted to learn more about ancestral domain management as practised on the island.

Riak Bumi and Dian Tama, both from West Kalimantan and NATRIPAL/Task Force from the Philippines went to Nilgiris in November. At Keystone they got on-the-job training in honey processing. Soon after the training Riak Bumi (through EP and funded by the Indonesian Focal Point) received basic, but high-quality processing equipment (refractometer, filters) for use in Danau Sentarum. Equipment and lessons learned have already been tested with good results. (See NBTA for related article.)

LPMA of South Kalimantan and a Dayak Meratus representative in November went on an ancestral domain learning visit to Bakun in the Philippines. (See article.)

AGENDA March – December, 2004
Regional technical Workshop Value Addition in Community-Based NTFP Enterprise and Trade Strategies:  Puncak, April 20 – 22
National Crafts Workshop Philippines: July
Exchange visit Philippines/Indonesia to Brazil: September
Annual EP Regional Meeting: mid October in Vietnam. The meeting will be hosted by TEW.
Resin Tapping Workshop Nilgiris: November.
National Forest Honey Worskhop in Danau Sentarum (West Kalimantan): Mid- December

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