bamboo business in northeast

Bamboo and Cane Crafts: A Thriving Business in Northeastern India

Northeastern India is a heaven of different cultures and artistic masterpieces. In recent years, we have come across the Northeast being more and more known for its handicrafts and cane-related items. 

Northeastern India produces original, authentic, and exclusive bamboo or cane items that are unlike anything else in the country. For this reason, the masses from across the country are drawn to this region. In this article, let’s find out how this amazing Indian region is minting money through bamboo basketry and cane handicrafts. 


History of Cane & Bamboo Handicrafts

history of bamboo cane

This work of art can be tracked down to the 2nd century AD. The massive bamboo, as well as cane vegetation, has been mentioned in ancient texts. Ptolemy mentions the mountainous and marshy cane crown marshes used for bridges in Assam. 

Assuming that in Harshacharita Bana, the meeting is being verified or testified carefully before sending the same to the ruler Assam Bhaskara Varma. All the goodies are packed nicely in a big basket and further decorated using thick bamboo tubes and putting the birds in the cages.

Cane woods, which are predominantly available in organic colors, have a trendy appearance and are known for their longevity, lightweight, simple maintenance, and eco-friendliness. Cane is known for its unique property that, even after being somewhat solid, can also be conveniently flexible, making it suitable for furniture manufacturing.

Cane is now used to make all kinds of furniture, including couches, tables, armchairs, wooden chairs, storage boxes, filing cabinets, closets, beds, lounge chair weaving, and recliners. Candy cane or the bamboo craft in India are readily accessible at various costs to accommodate the budgets of individuals of all socioeconomic backgrounds.

In 2002, India Post released a miniaturized sheet of four stamps. All such stamps represented various traditional crafts, including cane and bamboo work. The stamp depicts a cane, a bamboo vase of flowers, and a jar.

Before we dive into the specifics of cane and bamboo goods, we must first define bamboo and cane.




The bamboo plant is a giant, burgeoning member of the grass family. Among the significant components of bamboo, bamboo arts and crafts are particularly popular. For example, bamboo shoots are used in food preparation, whereas fibers are used in textile production. The firmness, sturdiness, richness, tonality, and perseverance of bamboo had already made it a popular choice for creating cane furniture.

The following are the most widely accepted and economically productive bamboo species:

  • Muli (Melocannabambusoides)
  • Dalu (Drepanostachyumdallas)
  • Khang (Dendrocalamuslongispathus)
  • Kaligoda (Oxytenantheranigrociliata)
  • Pecha (Dendrocalamus Hamilton-ii)

Likewise, Muli and Dalu have substantial business value, the former for pulping, development, and fencing, and the latter for mats and baskets. The bamboo plant overgrows and can also be consistently cultivated.



Typically, thick brushes have porous stems called canes.

There are only three wild populations of cane that are obtained in a broad sense: 

  • Jati (Calamus tenuis)
  • Tita (Calamus leptesadix), 
  • and Lejai (Calamus floribundus)

As minor characteristics, Sundi (Calamus garuba) and Raidang (Calamus flagellum) are found. Besides being tougher, cane isn’t affected by liquid, and it has an aesthetic appearance. In the development of eco-friendly and efficient home furnishings, bamboo weaving and cane weaving has been proven to be an efficient and renewable resource.

Caning refers to the method or art of maneuvering furniture and other cane-related objects. This craftsmanship is made using a cane, and the method is known as caning, with the result being the cane item. Modern cane product lines are not made to represent a rusty lifestyle or as exterior decor but rather to reflect a more contemporary lifestyle. The trendy outfit of eco-furniture also incorporates unpolished natural bamboo decor, laminated bamboo with a darker smudged finish, and milled bamboo.

bamboo products


Most Common Types of Bamboo Products Crafted in Northeastern India

In light of the current demand and export possibilities, innovators are recommending beginning manufacturing of the mentioned bamboo products:

  • Blind and screen made of woven bamboo
  • Bamboo knitting needles
  • Grilling sticks or the bamboo stick craft
  • Skewers
  • Fruit knives
  • Party selections
  • Ear scrappers and back scratchers
  • spoon made of rice
  • Sticks for plant support
  • Picking teeth
  • Cushions for the seats
  • Spoons for ice cream
  • Kite string
  • Wooden knitting needles

bamboo business

Numerous different popular bamboo merchandise is:

  • Brooms made of bamboo
  • Handle of a knife
  • Bamboo drapes
  • Handbags made of bamboo
  • Vases for flowers and ashtrays
  • Hanging on the wall
  • Fans that fold
  • Walking canes


How About Cane Products?

cane products

On the other hand, the cane furnishing line necessitates a high level of expertise in the aspect of the laborers. Such ability is considered prestigious. Cachar district has a unique edge over all the other districts within the state in terms of master artisans in the production of cane decor. Most of the state’s major cities have commercial operations of the craft.

To satisfy the increasing demands of buyers, urban workplaces are involved in the production of different forms of cane furniture. These include myriad stuff, such as containers, murrahs, cradles, office trays, bottle carriers, tiffin canisters, motorcycle baskets, candy cane ornaments, waste paper bins, candy cane reindeer, and so forth. Such product lines are more expensive than other types of bamboo.

Rattan and cane furniture are popular for a variety of reasons. There are several obvious reasons for this:

  • This type of furniture costs less than other types of wooden or metal furniture. The cost-effectiveness of this material makes it a favorite choice for decorating homes and patios. Since it is reasonably priced, it can also be replaced and altered frequently.
  • Outdoor cane furniture is mostly used in gardens and patios as it can withstand weather changes. Although climatic changes seldom affect it, it should be placed away from direct heat and sunlight, as it may become brittle. Rustproof and water-resistant, it is also durable.
  • The versatile nature of rattan furniture allows it to be transformed into different types. Because of its incomparable versatility, it can transform the decor of a home or office space. It can be used to make a variety of furniture that can be placed in different parts of the house or garden.

different bamboo products


The Northern states are rich in crafts and artwork. The works of art and handloom have long been a historical trait of most indigenous groups, which is why society continues to thrive. The substances employed in manufacturing these cane and bamboo basketry items comprise nearly 90% of the natural and sustainable resources in the region. As a result, it provides numerous advantages over comparable items composed of synthetic materials. The popularity of these handicrafts is increasing globally as craftspeople gain more visibility these days due to the emergence of digital media and platforms.

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