'Dilis flour, malunggay powder show promise'

Amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic, malunggay (horseradish) and dilis (anchovy) are becoming "go-to" nutritional items after Southern Luzon State University (SLSU) developed malunggay powder and dilis flour.

The powder and flour were deemed highly marketable under the Technology and Investment Profiles monograph series published by Southeast Asian Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA).

This project, funded by the Department of Agriculture's Bureau of Agriculture Research (BAR), was undertaken by Dorris Gatus, project leader; Veronica Aurea Rufo, project coordinator; and Nemia Pelayo, technical adviser.

The project supported the financial feasibility of the products under which the resource persons used cash flow analysis with the following tools: net present value, benefit-cost ratio and financial internal rate return.

The analysis showed that pure malunggay powder and dilis flour have promising investment potential.

SEARCA Director Glenn Gregorio said that, through the agency's core program on emerging for innovation for growth, SEARCA is actively working to promote technology-based innovations among local enterprises. This is also under SEARCA's 11th five-year plan that is focused on accelerating transformation though agricultural innovation.

The experts said the powder and flour can be used as a food ingredient and flavoring. The project also targets to create livelihood opportunities in Tagkawayan town, Quezon province, where SLSU is located.

The products' target consumers are institutional buyers, such as bakeshops, eateries, restaurants, hotels and hospitals; entrepreneurs engaged in food processing; households, particularly those with lactating mothers and malnourished children; vegetarians, especially those suffering from anemia; and government agencies implementing feeding programs.