MANILA–The Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aqutic and Natural Resources Research and Development (DOST-PCAARRD) said it hopes Filipino farmers will utilize industrial tree plantation species (ITPS) through nanotechnology.
ITPS are large-scale, intensively managed plantations that will eventually undergo industrial processes to produce paper, palm oil, among others.
According to PCAARRD, nanotechnology will help boost the ITPS plantation. Thus, this will contribute to rehabilitation and reforestation efforts in some areas in the country.
Recently, PCAARRD has funded the “Value Addition and Waste Recovery Systems for ITPS: Maximizing the Value of Philippine Industrial Tree Plantation Species through Nanotechnology Interventions and Bioplastic Production” project.
The Council has allotted almost Php 5 million for the said project that aims to strengthen recent advances in forest nanotechnology and bioplastics, and add more value to the ITPS.
PCAARRD said the project would run for two years, and had two components.
The first component, “Production and Application of Cellulosic Nanocrystals from the Wood and Processing Wastes of ITPS” and “Bioplastics from ITPS: Production, Characterization and Potential Applications”, will determine possible new products as well as applications of nanocellulose from wood or waste materials from three commonly planted ITPS in the country — Falcata, Gmelina and Mangium.
On the other hand, the second component will explore the use of lignin obtained as by-product from the ITPS’ pulping.
Both project components will be led by representatives from the Department of Forest Products and Paper Science of the College of Forestry and Natural Resources, University of the Philippines – Los Banos, PCAARRD said.