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News Entry# 288668
  
Dec 15 2016 (08:42)  Railways may use coir wood to make train seats and berths (timesofindia.indiatimes.com)
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News Entry# 288668     
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Posted by: rdb*^  130006 news posts
COIMBATORE: The Indian Railways is likely to replace plywood with coir wood to make seats and berths in trains, said the chairman of the Coir Board, C P Radhakrishnan on Wednesday. Radhakrishnan, who recently met Union railways minister Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu, said the railways is keen on utilizing coir wood in place of plywood.
Radhakrishnan, who inaugurated the National Vendor Development programme organised by the ministry of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) and the Coimbatore SIDCO Industrial Manufacturers' Welfare Association (COSIEMA) at Padmavathi Ammal Auditorium, spoke about the emerging coir industry.
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Railways procures 1,750 crore worth plywood every year. So, if the railways decides to replace plywood with coir wood, the Coir Board will earn an additional revenue of 1,750 crore," he said. At present, the Coir Board revenue is pegged at 2,000 crore.
Around three to four manufacturers are supplying plywood to railways now. "We recently met railways minister Suresh Prabhu and he showed keen interest in using coir wood. The railways has set prerequisite standards and we have identified a way to manufacture coir wood to meet the standards," Radhakrishnan said.
The former MP from Coimbatore said the replacement of plywood by coir wood will bring down deforestation and increase afforestation. "At present forests are being razed down for wood. If coir wood replaces conventional wood then we can plant more coconut trees. This is good both for the economy and the environment," said Radhakrishnan.
When asked about the strength and standard of coir wood in comparison to that of plywood, which has been for years used for making train seats and berths, Radhakrishnan said, "We are working on it, and the results of the experiments are so far satisfactory. But we will soon perfect the method to make coir wood as durable and strong as any other wood type."
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