For thousands of years, Bamboo Shoots have been an important staple food. Now, with food processing techniques bamboo shoots can be purchased year round by an Asia’s increasingly wealthy populations. Opportunities to supply this demand are very high in countries where bamboo grows well. The establishment of a bamboo shoots processing operation requires a suitable bamboo plantation area and partners to manage supply of raw shoots, know-how to the level of common vegetable processing already found in Cambodia, and capital investment upwards from US$35,000.
Product and Market
Bamboo shoots are young bamboo stems that provide a versatile vegetable food source rich in vitamins and minerals. Due to advances in technologies, processed or dried shoots are now available and popular all year round. Traditional peaks in shoots consumption was during the Lunar New Year (mostly dried shoots), while fresh shoots were consumed at the start of the shoot harvest season. Processed and packaged shoots either canned, pickled, spiced and dried now enable urban and richer consumers to buy and consume shoots at any time of the year.
The primary bamboo shoots markets are in Asia, while international markets are growing, with the global trade estimated at around USD1.5B, noting that domestic consumption is excluded from trade data. Domestic markets in Cambodia have been estimated at USD1M1 , with most of this consumption of traditional products. Opportunities for processed product increase with increased spending power of middle-class Cambodia. Production from Cambodia can compete as the raw material costs can be much lower than regional competitors.
1 OHK-IFC-MPDF 2006.
Production lines can be established for boiled shoots or dried shoots products. The equipment and machinery is similar to that for food processing. Simple facilities with suitable electricity supply are needed.
Equipment lines from Chinese supplies can be purchased for around $25,000 for a production line that can produce and package high quality boiled as well as dried product.
| Dehukind marchine
|| Slicing marchine
|| Canning marchine
Input costs represent around 50% of operating costs. Other costs the Cambodian context will be management (33%), factory labour (12%), depreciation (4%), other (1%). The wholesale price for quality product in the region for is $0.8/kg (boiled) and $4/kg (dried). A 3t/day factory can operate for 180-220days depending on species, providing revenue of around $200,000/year.