I've been quite surprised at the shortage of rattan over the past 2 months. I've checked my usual sources and they have no idea when they'll be able to restock! I've got orders I can't fill and I've been turning away other customers looking for rattan. One possibility is that the Society For Creative Anachronisms (SCA) has adapted many of their weapons to rattan, and with their upcoming Fall tournaments, perhaps there has been a run on sources.
I'll say this for the SCA, from a small backyard Berkeley event they've grown into a huge international community, and the quality of armor and weaponry they use for tourney sparring is far beyond what we settle for in the FMA, which has had very little innovation in these areas. I know there is some cross-over between the SCA and FMA practitioners, but I doubt we'll see many half-garbed "natives" taking on armored SCA fighters. Lapu-Lapu and his men defeated Magellan with superior numbers and tactical position, but I don't think the SCA will offer similar odds.