DOST-NCR’s SETUP Adoptor Spots R&D Breakthrough in Food Tech

The DOST-National Capital Region’s SETUP-assisted firm, Banawe Soybean Corp., was featured for its successful breakthrough in food technology during the 1st CRADLE Symposium titled, “DOST-CRADLE’s Science Kusina – Innovative breakthroughs in food technology, health and nutrition: Sarap at Sustansya, mula sa agham at teknolohiya ng DOST CRADLE” held on 18 January 2022.

Funded under the DOST’s Science for Change Program (S4CP) Collaborative R&D to Leverage Philippine Economy (CRADLE), the Project titled “Development and Quality of Soysage Using Okara” aims to process tons of okara wastes into “soysage”- a vegan sausage made of tofu, as a new product line.

With tons of okara wastes or soybean residues being dumped every day, Banawe Soybean Corporation tapped the experts from University of Santo Tomas during a Government-Academe-Industry Network (GAIN) Workshop, co-organized by the DOST-NCR with the Science for Change Program Project Management Office (S4CP-PMO) and USAID Science, Technology, Research and Innovation for Development (STRIDE) in August 2019 and conceptualized a project proposal to process okara wastes into a food product.

After series of iterations and brainstorming sessions, food experts from the UST came up with soysage as an additional product line for Banawe Soybean.

According to Dr. Elizabeth H. Arenas, UST Project Leader, the soysage, unlike any other commercial meat sausages, is high in dietary fiber and free from chemicals and preservatives. Moreover, it is a gluten-free product which makes it suitable for people allergic to wheat. This can be availed at a low-cost price.

Meanwhile, DOST-NCR RD Patalinjug mentioned that this R&D project sums up a “triple helix of innovation at its finest” and that the DOST-NCR will always be ready to provide a holistic approach of assistance packaged in an “S&T toolbox” to Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) seeking to improve their productivity and processes through R&D.

DOST Secretary Fortunato T. de la Pena, Undersecretary for Regional Operations Engr. Sancho A. Mabborang, Undersecretary for Research and Development Dr. Rowena Cristina L. Guevarra, DOST Regional Directors, academe and industry partners attended the said event.

The Symposium is an avenue to encourage the industry to partner with academic institutions for collaborative R&D to answer immediate problems of our local enterprises.

Furthermore, it served as a kick-off activity for two other events – the 2nd CRADLE Symposium in February and the 1st CRADLE Conference to be held in March 2022.

By: Shaira P. Rapisora, SCCU

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