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Davao Occidental school gets DOST funding

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Davao City—An agriculture and marine school in Davao Occidental received nearly P200,000 in funding from the regional Department of Science and Technology (DOST) for its research on improving the processing and shelf life of the province’s products.

The Southern Philippines Agri-Business and Marine and Aquatic School of Technology (Spamast) in Malita town of Davao Occidental was granted P199,070 to support its research on calamansi nip and marinated tilapia to help local farmers and processors improve product form and shelf longevity while preserving the taste and texture of the two food items.

The Spamast presented for DOST funding its research titled “Development of Calamansi Nip in Dry Form Using Spray Drying Method,” and the “Improvement of Nutrient Content and Sensory Quality of SPAMAST Tilanggit (Dried Marinated Tilapia) by Vacuum-Frying.”

In the explanatory note on calamansi released by the DOST, Spamast said developing calamansi nip into its dry form “may enable mass production during peak seasons.”

“This will be beneficial to producers and traders promoting a stable price for agricultural commodities like calamansi and ginger to compensate for their cost of production and optimize their income,” Spamast said. Hence, “the development of calamansi nip in dry form may be considered as another opportunity to generate or provide additional income not only to target beneficiaries, but most of all to the farmers.”

The Spamast Tilanggit “aims to produce vacuum-fried Tilanggit with improved quality and extended shelf-life to address the factors that affect the nutrient content of Tilanggit, such as the source of Tilapia, ingredients and drying conditions, and cooking methods.”

During processing, nutrient content and sensory qualities, such as color, taste, aroma, and texture of a product may change, Spamast added. “It is therefore important to standardize the processing methods that can preserve the nutrient content and other qualities of Tilanggit.”

Spamast has been producing Tilanggit in Davao Occidental for a decade, the DOST added.

The Davao regional office of the DOST said it funded the projects under its program for micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to promote local food research and improve the quality of their existing products and develop and commercialize new ones.

The Food Processing Innovation Center (FPIC) in Davao would also work on the research projects, “which will serve as the venue in the development of the said innovative products using the DOST-High Impact Technology Solutions (HITS) equipment namely, spray dryer and vacuum fryer,” the agency said.

It said the FPIC-Davao is a banner project of DOST-11 to serve as a one-stop food research and development facility where local food processors, students, faculty, and researchers can develop value-added food products using local agricultural and fishery resources.

The research collaboration was formalized on June 14 via a memorandum of agreement signed by Spamast President Ruth S. Lucero, Provincial Science and Technology Center—Davao Occidental Director Maria Victoria I. Dado, Spamast Associate Professor Edelyn Albiso and Spamast Instructor Jamaica N. Meralles.

Read full article on BusinessMirror

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