Brown rice nutribars for COVID-19 frontliners to be produced, distributed soon?

Published June 12, 2021, 11:22 PM

by Charissa Luci-Atienza 

The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has announced the pilot production and distribution of vegetable protein-enriched functional food products from special purpose rice.


DOST Secretary Fortunato “Boy” T. de la Peña said the project is being implemented by the Central Luzon State University (CLSU) as part of the Central Luzon Agriculture, Aquatic, and Natural Resources Research and Development (R&D) Consortium’s (CLAARRDEC) contribution to the government’s coronavirus disease (COVID-19) response.

CLAARRDEC is a conglomeration of 26 agencies and institutions within Central Luzon conducting or promoting research and development in agriculture, forestry and natural resources in the region.

“It (project) aims to pilot produce and distribute nutribars, a vegetable protein-enriched functional food product from special purpose rice,” de la Peña said on the DOSTv Facebook page on Friday, June 11.

He said functional food products were being developed from special purpose rice variants such as pigmented, glutinous and aromatic brown rice.

The DOST chief said the development of such products “will help ease problem of availability of nutritious food during period of emergency and for vulnerable groups.”

“Moreover, this will promote to consumers the special purpose and aromatic brown rice through innovative health products especially among the frontliners and other consumers who are constrained by mobility and time for food preparation,” he added.

De la Peña said the CLAARRDEC’s project is expected to “provide important products that will be useful with or without emergency situations, because it will serve as an avenue in developing and making available healthier food products from locally produced raw materials.”

One of the CLAARRDEC’s roles is to review ad update R & D efforts in relation to regional needs in agriculture, fisheries, forestry and natural resources, in coordination with the DOST’s Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development (PCAARRD) and the Regional Development Council (RDC) of Central Luzon.

Its major objective is to develop strategies and implement a responsive system of research and extension management for accelerating and sustaining regional development goal with the end in view of maximizing the generation, verification, dissemination, exchange of information and utilization of research results.