Toothpicks of bamboo (1)
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Bamboo Engineering and Research Center, China. 2001. Toothpicks of bamboo (1). INBAR, Beijing, China
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/64381
Toothpick manufacturing unit
Bamboo toothpicks are widely used in many Asian countries, especially in China where there are a large number of small-scale toothpick production units. Bamboos are renewable, can be harvested annually and are an ideal source of softwood for light uses such as toothpicks. The productivity of sympodial bamboos (clump-forming types) is much higher than monopodial bamboos (running bamboos) and for this reason, only toothpicks made from sympodial bamboos are considered in this TOTEM. Bamboos have been used to produce toothpicks in China since the Qing dynasty. Longmen county in Guangdong province in southern China is a major toothpick production centre and toothpicks have been produced by hand here for generations.. In Vietnam bamboo toothpick production methods have been developed specifically for the blind. The toothpicks produced by the blind association involved have captured a considerable portion of the domestic market and have created jobs and stable incomes. In China there are now a range of modern machines available that permit the efficient medium-scale production of toothpicks in community or village level enterprises. They permit greater production rates, increased uniformity and higher quality than hand production.