Common Fund for Commodities - Alternative Applications for Sisal and Henequen - Technical Paper No. 14

Table of Contents

Proceedings of a Seminar held by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) and the Common Fund for Commodities (CFC)

Rome, 13 December 2000

Cover Picture: Sisal planting trials in Tanzania, conducted as part of the CFC-financed project: Product and Market Development of Sisal and Henequen.

Common Fund for Commodities
Stadhouderskade 55
1072 AB Amsterdam the Netherlands,
Tel ++31 20 575 4949,
Fax ++31 20 676 0231
e-mail: [email protected]
Web site:

Commodities and Trade Division (Intergovernmental Group on Hard Fibres)
Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)
Viale delle Terme di Caracalla 00100
Rome, Italy
Tel: ++39 06 57051
Fax: ++39 06 5705 4495
e-mail: [email protected]
Web site:

The designations employed and the representation of material in this report do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Common Fund for Commodities (CFC) or the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or its authorities, or concerning the delineation of its frontiers or boundaries.

The contents of this report may not be reproduced, stored in a data retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the Common Fund for Commodities; except that reasonable extracts may be made for the purpose of non-commercial use provided the Common Fund for Commodities and FAO are acknowledged. The views expressed in the papers and presentations made at the seminar are those of the respective authors. They are not necessarily shared by FAO and/or the Common Fund for Commodities.

© FAO and CFC, 2001

Table of Contents


Welcome Address

Opening Statement

Executive Summary

Resumen ejecutivo
Sumário executivo
Executive summary (Chinese version)

Overview of the Sisal and Henequen Industry: A Producers' Perspective

Overview of the Various Alternative Uses of Sisal

A Review of the Market in Traditional Sisal and Henequen Products (Especially Agricultural Twines and General Cordage) and an Assessment of Future Potential

The Potential Market for Sisal and Henequen Geotextiles

Sisal Fibre: Market Opportunities in the Pulp and Paper Industry

Natural Fibre Composites in Structural Components: Alternative Applications for Sisal?

Green Fibres and Their Potential in Diversified Applications

Annex A: Seminar Programme

Annex B: Statistical Appendix: FAO Data on Production and Trade of Sisal and Henequen, 1965 to 2000

Table I. Sisal and henequen production
Table II. Imports of raw sisal and henequen
Table III. Exports of raw sisal and henequen
Table IV. Imports of sisal and henequen manufactures
Table V. Exports of sisal and henequen manufactures