The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has nodded to a P2.9-million research study that will look into the use of spray drying technology that could convert fresh produce into spray-dried fruits, vegetable juice blend powders.
DOST Region X (DOST-X) granted “more than P2.9 million” funding for the study to be conducted by the Central Mindanao University (CMU) in Bukidnon.
It said the assistance is expected to strengthen the capability of the research state university’s Food Research and Development Center to launch more innovations in food production which could help the country attain food resiliency and ensure food security.
The center had developed nutritious juices from the abundant and underutilized fruits and vegetables in Bukidnon.
The CMU’s project is entitled “Spray Drying of Fruit Vegetable Juice Blends from Abundant and Underutilized Food Crops in Bukidnon.”
“Prior to the implementation of the project, the center cannot store the juices for a long period of time on the shelves due to limited expiry dates. Because of this, the center will eventually incur a large amount of waste from plastic bottle containers,” the DOST-X said in a statement.
“The funded research will now be able to solve further wastage by utilizing the spray drying technology to convert fresh produce into spray-dried fruits and vegetable juice blend powders.”
The DOST-X explained that the juice blend powders have a longer shelf life and higher stability and efficiency in storage, handling, and transportation processes compared with the liquid juice.
“With its full implementation, the research is expected to provide functional emergency foods, respond to the research agenda on management and utilization of fruits and vegetables through a scientific research approach, provide promising livelihood programs to uplift communities in Bukidnon, provide technology adaptation of local farmers and SMEs, and give additional information and references on spray dried food products in the country,” it said.