Products from the lowly Bakong plant (Hanguana Malayana) are going places if plans of the Biodiversity Partnerships Project (BPP) to link LGU Sta. Teresita’s Bakong products with Narda’s materialize.

The assistance of the Biodiversity Partnerships Project (BPP) is made possible with the inclusion of Sta. Teresita, Cagayan as part of the priority LGUs to be assisted to mainstream biodiversity conservation in local development planning, particularly in agricultural landscapes.

Bakong is one of the chosen natural resources for development and conservation in the biodiversity corridor. The LGU has made considerable progress in the manipulation of Bakong and promotion of its various products such as fashion bags, wall decors and other handicrafts.

Relatedly, Narda Capuyan, the lady behind the very popular Narda’s Handwoven Arts & Crafts will be tapped to provide the needed shot in the arm for the newly discovered Bakong material.

Narda’s started in the 70’s in La Trinidad, Benguet, weaving blankets from recycled acrylic yarns. Narda, a family planning nurse whose hand-knitting hobby attracted the mothers, encouraged the women to weave to keep them busy. Through a series of product manipulations, Narda revived the Cordillera Ikat, a very old tradition of tying and dyeing segments of threads before actual weaving. Over the years, Narda Capuyan has garnered prestigious local and international awards as her products gained widespread popularity.

It is hoped that Narda’s successes in promoting Ikat and related Cordillera crafts locally and abroad, could serve as an inspiration for the proponents of Bakong crafts.

Meanwhile, the municipality of Sta. Teresita, Cagayan in coordination with DTI-Cagayan will be hosting the 4th National Eco-Tourism Festival which will highlight Bakong Weaving Competition and a Bakong Manipulation Training.

The festival will run from February 24 to 28 at the Bancalao Nature Park, Sta. Teresita, Cagayan

OTOP Trade Fair will also be conducted where best locally manufactured products of the municipality will be showcased.