Report: Value Addition to Agriculture Products for Increasing Productivity Training, September 7-13, 2015, Sri Lanka

Group Photo

Group Photo

Poverty and Hunger are considered to be one of the biggest issues of our world today, although there are billions of foods wasted or being loss everyday. According to United Nations Environment Programme, approximately 1.3 billion tonnes gets lost or wasted in the world for human consumption every year.

There is a great imbalance of food availability and distribution, although there is a so much food waste and food loss in the world today. The training workshop on Value addition to Agricultural Products aims to impart the knowledge on how to increase productivity by innovating agricultural waste and converting to potential products, waste management and waste processing.

OBJECTIVES FOR PARTICIPATION

N. Young, Global Foodsolutions, Inc.

With the emerging trends of foods to be Natural, Fresh, Organic and Healthy, our company can capitalize our capabilities and promote these kinds of products in the global market.  My expectations to this training workshop is learn new products that are available in by which makes use of by-products. The learning on natural ingredients derived from by products/ waste will greatly contribute to decrease waste in our plant operations as well as improve productivity. Furthermore, my expectation is to new R&D and packaging trends for value-addition to agricultural products that can greatly help my role in developing new products that coincides with the emerging food trends.

R. Bonotan, Soyuz Foods International, Inc.

To be trained in the emerging technology and techniques in value addition to agricultural products. As head of the Research and Development Department, I aim to learn about these latest tools and technology so that raw materials will be optimized and waste will be reduced if not totally eliminated since in Calamansi Extract production, 70% of the fruit just go to waste. With this training, I may be able to appropriate necessary process; equipment and research to develop new and profitable products out of the by-product/waste in Calamansi extract production. As SME we have limited resources especially for research and with this training course I expect to be more knowledgeable with trending and profitable products from by/waste products as well as the technology that goes with the process.

PARTICIPANTS

Participants are composed of a good mix of representatives from the government, agriculture, academe, and private sectors including NGOs and food manufacturing/farms. The participants are coming from 24 various countries, namely, Bangladesh (1), Cambodia (1), Taiwan – PRC (2), Fiji (1), Iran (2), India (2), Indonesia (1), Malaysia (1), Mongolia (1), Nepal (2), Pakistan (1), Philippines (3) and local participants from Sri Lanka (5).

Philippine participants come from the private sector/SME, namely:

Ms. Rachel Joy Bonotan
Production Supervisor
Soyuz Foods International, Inc.

Mr. Reden Mark Costales
President
Costales Nature Farms

Ms. Nicole Pamela Y. Young
Vice-President
Global Foodsolutions, Inc.

We hope that there can be a collaboration among our companies and developing a project that can contribute to value addition of agricultural products.

SCOPE, CONTENT, METHODOLOGY

Lecture by Resource Persons

Dr. Navam Hettiarachchy from the University of Arkansas has shown her great passion in discussing the topics from post harvest handling, the value-addition to agricultural by products or waste that can be generated or extracted for another function;  product development and innovation; packaging trends as well as labeling requirements and the emerging global tends of products and examples of product innovation coming from waste products. There were a lot of examples discussed in her lectures which dealt on formerly considered waste but now have functions in food. A source of waste products are the solid remains of fruit, peels and seeds such as banana, apples, orange and pineapple. Studies of these fruit wastes have functions which have known anti-oxidants, flavanoids, good source of dietary fiber as well as phytochemicals that can be used as neutraceuticals or raw material for products. I value these learnings very much as these are the current wastes we encounter in our production of processed fruits and vegetables. With these concepts and learnings on the sources of waste products, I can turn these formerly considered waste as natural ingredients that has functionalities instead of buying chemicals to our pre-production. Furthermore, these wastes can also be gathered for vermicomposts which can be distributed to our farmer partners and use as natural fertilizers. I value the examples that have been researched from their Institute so that developing countries can have access to these trends and uses.

Mr. Waheed Ahmad, a consultant of Capital Food Industries, lectured on Quality, Safety and Quality Assurance Certifications relevant to Food Industries. These quality certifications which are GMP, HACCP and FSSC have now become a basic requirement for Food Industries to ensure that quality and food safety are in place across all points of production until to consumers. Aside from the above Quality Assurance certifications above mentioned, there are also additional certifications for specific requirements which are Global G.A.P (Good Agricultural Practices), Non-GMO, Certified Oganic for farm methods and classifications of harvest; Additional certifications for religious groups such as HALAL for Muslims, KOSHER for Jews.  These additional certifications give more value to products and gives classifications according to the demands and preferences of the consumers today.

Site Visit

Site Visit to Hayley's Condiments Ltd, Sri Lanka

Site Visit to Hayley’s Condiments Ltd, Sri Lanka

The plant visit to Hayleys Condiments Ltd. gave us information on how gherkin products are processed and what can be done throughout the process to minimize the wastes. For instance, the process of selection differentiates the raw material according to size which can be packed in whole and has more value. The other gherkins which did not met the size can be further processed into pickles or relish.

Site visit to Yataderiya Tea Factory, Sri Lanka

Site visit to Yataderiya Tea Factory, Sri Lanka

The Yataderiya Tea Factory, on the other hand, has showed us how teas are harvested and being processed.

OUTCOMES AND EVALUATION

N. Young, Global Foodsolutions, Inc.

The training has increased my learning especially in applications that can be implemented from post-harvest to production process in order to reduce product wastes. Throughout the course, we have been educated in every step of product development as well as having a refresher course in Chemistry. These chemistry concepts made me realize its importance in identification of possible by-products that can be produced because by breaking down its components, we may be able to identify what are the functions that it can provide. I particularly learned a lot from Module 6, 7 and 8 because it showed the agricultural wastes which can be developed and diverted to other food applications or can be converted as neutraceuticals. My expectations from the course have been fully achieved and I am now challenged to look for innovative ways in minimizing raw material wastes in the production process as well as how these wastes can be translated to other potential products or functions.

There are two  projects I would like to study and hopefully implement. First is the fruit peels particularly the banana peels which are currently a waste product in our production process. I learned from the course that the banana peels can be a source of ethanol which can be further studied to convert to ethylene thru dehydration. If we become successful in converting these banana peels to end state ethylene – these can help us as we have uses in ethylene in our production process. The next project is to vermicomposting and then distribution to farmers as natural fertilizers.

The new trends in packaging and labeling has helped me from a Marketing standpoint on how to give more value to our products by highlighting on the benefits and the nutrient claims to clients.

Aside than the lectures and learning, we have developed a great bond amongst the participants and built international network which we can collaborate together in projects as well as business partnerships.

R. Bonotan, Soyuz Foods International, Inc.

There was a lot of new knowledge that were imparted during the 7-day training course. One of the things I learned is the differentiation of functionality, functional food and nutraceutical. In my own understanding, I thought these are the same. But Dr. Hetiarachchy made it clear that these three are different. Functionality is when the food products functions as it is; functional food on the other hand is a food or food product is given an additional function often related to health-promotion or disease prevention. Nutraceutical a food product (it may be a part or the whole food) which contain a certain component that is health beneficial. Also, new trends in packaging technology were introduced. As Food Technologist and Head of the R&D department of our company, the training was very helpful in providing new insights and shifting of perspective with regards to the optimization of raw materials.
The resource speakers were very open to answering queries and imparting information on the said topics. Over-all, the training course is effective but should be followed through in the participating countries.

RECOMMENDATIONS AND ACTION STEPS

N. Young, Global Foodsolutions, Inc.

The training has equipped me with the basic knowledge of the numerous uses of fruit and vegetables wastes in our production and converting it to by-products. Furthermore, the emerging trends of labeling and highlighting the benefits of the product are not only informative but also an effective marketing tool to sell your product by capitalizing the health benefits because of the trend of natural and healthy foods.

I highly suggest that Philippine NPO (DAP) shall offer courses on the value-addition to Agricultural products as this will greatly help the Food Industry reduce waste and making use of the by-products to other potential products. With this course, this can be disseminated by Philippine NPO (DAP) in cooperation with Philippine Trade and Training Center as part of its courses to impart awareness to the Food Industry.

As for Global Foodsolutions, I shall further explore the fruit peels that can be converted to other by-products as well as use vermicomposing in order to disseminate these fertilizers to our farmer partners.

R. Bonotan, Soyuz Foods International, Inc.

The training course met its objectives. Presentations of topics were very clear.

Soyuz Foods international Inc. sent me to this training course to gain knowledge regarding product development. With the insights I got from the resource speakers, we will continue our research on developing products from waste and by-products of Calamansi production because for sure these products have potential.

The training really provided us with new knowledge. DAP and APO can set-up a national follow-up seminar wherein we can gather researchers, food technologist/scientists and/or members of R&D departments of small and medium enterprises and even farmers who are willing to learn and to converge and re-echo these knowledge. Even though there are topics that are very technical, it can be translated to layman’s terms for them to understand the concepts fully. I, personally, am willing to be part of the team to set-up this training or seminar.

SUBMITTED BY

NICOLE PAMELA Y. YOUNG
Vice-President for Sales
and Marketing Head
Global Foodsolutions, Inc.

RACHEL JOY F. BONOTAN
Production Supervisor
Soyuz Foods International, Inc.

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