A Quezon-based organization is set to upgrade the quality of its bamboo products using a dryer made especially for non-wood agro-forest raw materials.

Thru DOST-Quezon, the San Quintin Multi-Sectoral Organization (SQMSO) recently adopted a 60 cubic ft-capacity dryer designed by DOST-Forest Products Research and Development Institute (DOST-FPRDI).

(Left): FPRDI’s non-wood dryer installed at the SQMSO compound in Quezon Province;
(Right) Group members practice using FPRDI’s moisture meter for bamboo

According to DOST-FPRDI’s Engr. Wency H. Carmelo, “SQMSO is the only producer of bamboo straws for milk teas in Quezon province. Prior to DOST-FPRDI’s dryer, their products were often attacked by molds.”

“The dryer was designed to speed up drying time and ensure the continuous production of bamboo straws even during rainy months. With this, the organization is aiming to supply 10,000 bamboo straws a month to their clients,” she added.

A DOST-FPRDI team led by Carmelo installed the dryer and conducted test runs last March 22-24, 2022 at the SMQSO production facility in Brgy. San Quintin, Calauag, Quezon. The team also trained the organization members on dryer operation and maintenance thru the assistance of FPRDI’s Technical Services Division.

Apart from the dryer, the organization will also adopt the Institute’s other bamboo processing technologies to improve their handicraft production.

SQMSO members pose with Director Maria Esperanza Jawili of the DOST Provincial S&T Center- Quezon, and DOST-FPRDI team composed of Engr. Wency Carmelo, For. Christian Amante, For. AJ Gillado Jr., and Ms. Elizabeth N. Dioso.

Fabrication of the dryer was funded by the DOST CALABARZON's Grant In Aid Community Based Program (GIA-CBP) under the “Enhancement of Bamboo Products of SQMSO through the Adoption of DOST-FPRDI Bamboo Processing Technologies” project. ### (Apple Jean C. Martin- de Leon, 24 March 2022)