Young farmer in Pangasinan town turns veggies to chips

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CALASIAO, Pangasinan—A young farmer here has found a way to address the oversupply of vegetables in his town by introducing “Pinakbet” chips.

 Allan Padilla, president of the 4H AgriKuli Dinalaoan Club, used his grant assistance from the Department of Agriculture (DA) to buy a dehydrator machine, vacuum sealer, and powderizer machine to produce a nutritious snack that will also help the local farmers in his hometown.

Padilla said he thought of the Pinakbet (vegetable dish) chips upon seeing the problem of the farmers in the oversupply of their vegetable products. 

Sabi po nung ibang farmers mas gusto na nila magkonstraksyon na lang kasi yong ani nila nalulugi din lang sila dahil sa mura na lang pagdating sa palengke sa dami ng supply ,” he said in an interview on Friday.

Padilla and his other club members started sun drying the vegetables such as eggplant, lady’s finger (okra), sweet potato, tomato, string beans, squash, and sigarilyas (winged bean) to make Pinakbet chips.

However, when the weather was gloomy, the vegetables were destroyed by mold. 

“I joined the DA’s Kabataang Agribiz Competitive grant assistance program and won at the provincial level hence, we were able to buy the needed machines with the P50,000 grant,” he added. 

The production of Pinakbet chips also helps the youths, including the out-of-school ones in his community, to earn additional income for their school and other needs, he said. 

Padilla said with the machines, they are able to produce 150 packs of 100 grams Pinakbet chips weekly. 

“We sold it to our community and we target to sell more in Pasalubong Centers, hopefully in schools also so the children will have a choice of nutritious snack,” he said.

Padilla said the nutritional value of the vegetables remained intact as the dehydrator only removes water from the vegetables and not the nutrients. 

“We also make sure that the ingredients are all natural even the seasoning that is composed of garlic and onion that was powderized without having to add preservatives,” he added. 

 The Pinakbet chips are sold at P45 to P75 wholesale prices.PNA 

Image courtesy of Gerald Quinit

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