International Bamboo and Rattan Organization

International Bamboo and Rattan Organization

Improving bamboo and rattan standards

Developing and monitoring standards for bamboo products—to ensure they are safe, reliable and have a consistently high quality—improves consumer and supplier confidence. This in turn increases bamboo’s marketability and helps build value chains in international markets. INBAR has worked with the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) for years to develop new standards, and works with its Member States to incorporate these into national standards and building codes. INBAR has done this as the convener of Working Group 12 of the ISO Technical Committee (TC) 165 on Timber Structures. In 2016, INBAR also worked effectively with China and other Member States to establish the world’s first ISO TC dedicated to bamboo and rattan: ISO TC 296.

Since the late 1990s, INBAR has worked with ISO TC 165 to publish three international standards:

  • ISO 22156: Applies to the use of bamboo structures or bamboo-based panels joined together with adhesives or mechanical fasteners. The standard is concerned with the requirements for mechanical resistance, serviceability, and structure durability.
  • ISO 22157-1: Specifies test methods for evaluating physical and strength properties, specifically moisture content, mass per volume, shrinkage, compression, bending, shear, and tension.
  • ISO 22157-2: Provides informative guidelines for staff in laboratories on how to perform tests according to ISO 22157-1.

These standards have had a strong influence on several INBAR Member States including Colombia, Ecuador, India and Peru, which have since developed chapters on bamboo in their national building codes which reference these standards.

INBAR is currently working on three new ISO working items for ISO TC 165:

  • A new standard on ‘Bamboo Structures: Structural Grading of Bamboo Culms—Basic Principles and Procedures’
  • A revision of the current ISO standard, ‘Bamboo Structures: Determination of Physical and Mechanical Properties of Bamboo Culms—Part I: Test Methods’
  • A revision of the current ISO standard, ‘Bamboo Design’

For more information please contact Working Group 12 convener Liu Kewei.