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The traditional Filipino balisong making could soon be on the verge of extinction with surviving artists blaming the government for failing to protect and preserve the age-old art. Barrio Balisong which once boasted of balisong knives and was famous all over Batangas Province has today only just a handful of surviving blacksmiths and vaciadors.
With the introduction of modern balisongs , especially those that are being manufactured in the US., traditionally made Filipino balisongs have lost its importance and the demand has decreased drastically through the 2000s. A majority of the knifemakers involved in the traditional trade gave up balisong knives and embraced other lucrative trades or have seeked better opportunities as OFW’s (Overseas Filipino Workers).
With no government support, the traditional Filipino balisong knife makers have blamed the government for the death of the art. The general opinion has been that many families have given up knife making as it is no longer a lucrative trade. The last generation of knifemakers are now in their sixties, and with the younger generation showing no interest in the profession, the traditional Filipino balisong is now facing a threat of extinction.
Here’s a documentary by GMA7 regarding the dying balisong filipino art… Front Row's / Barangay Balisong