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DTI helps retired nurse turn corn husks into hats, bric-a-brac

BANGUED, Abra (PIA) – Nothing goes to waste for an Abra entrepreneur who turns discarded corn husks into marketable items.

Roxanne Tauro from Zone 4 Bangued, Abra has been showcasing her corn husk products at local and national trade fairs since 2013. She makes hats, tissue holders, refrigerator magnets, pan holders, coasters, leis, key chains, and other items from corn husks that are often peeled off and thrown away.

Roxanne Tauro showcases her corn husk products during the 2024 Dapil Festival Trade Fair at the Capitol Grounds in Bangued, Abra. (Photo by: JPM, PIA-Abra)

“I also make occasional items such as corsages during graduation, and lanterns for the Christmas season,” she said.

The 67-year-old shared that with the abundance of corn in the province, she is able to get raw materials from local farmers.

“When I go out and get the corn husks directly from them, I am able to get them for free since they’ll be throwing it anyway,  but when they deliver it to me, I pay them at least P100 per sack,” Tauro shared.

From the corn husks, she dips her raw materials in water and starts to manually spin it to make a cordage or rope, which serves as her base material for her products.

“I am able to finish my hats within three days, but I can make at least two tissue holders in a day,” she shared.

Aside from her corn husk products, she also makes keychains, purses, earrings, bracelets, and necklaces using beads.

She shared that she learned the skills through training and benchmarking with government agencies such as the Department of Trade Industry after returning home from Saudi Arabia, where she worked as a nurse.

The former OFW turned entrepreneur is now busy as an active participant in trade fairs, and in helping her fellow entrepreneurs.

“Aside from joining trade fairs like the Impakabsat and this Dapil Festival trade fair, the DTI also hires me to train different groups in the province on bead making and corn husk products,” she said.

This trade fair regular also brings her products abroad, where she is able to sell locally-made beads and pearl jewelry.

“We also have a store abroad where we sell the same locally-made items, especially the pearl jewelry, and some bead products,” she added.

Tauro and other local entrepreneurs are part of the 2024 Dapil Festival Trade Fair, where they showcase various products such as souvenirs, food, furniture, and loom-woven clothes, among others. (JJPM-PIA Abra)

A flower vase made from corn husks is another product of Bangued entrepreneur Roxanne Tauro. Aside from vases, she also makes tissue holders, hats, key chains, and leis among others. (Photo courtesy: Krishenne's General Merchandise)

About the Author

Jamie Joie Malingan

Regional Editor


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