Fish Be With You gathers Batangas Fish Processors
By: John Maico Hernandez, DOST PSTC Batangas
In preparation for the Lenten Season, DOST Batangas held a three-day seminar workshop on fish processing entitled “FISH BE WITH YOU” in benefit of the fish processors in Batangas province in partnership with BatStateU’s Food Innovation Center (FIC), April 10-12.
Fish processing industry in the Batangas province has continuously developed over the years through innovation and technological advancement. Prominently known for sinaing na tulingan, tilapia, and various sardine products, Batangueños really take pride when it comes to fish processing.
Fish Be With You was a solution to the upgrading of Batangas processed fish products. This activity helped encourage fish processors to enhance further their manufacturing practices, upgrade their processed fish products, and comply with the food safety requirements. Students and faculty members from BatStateU also partook in the said activity showing a gesture of interest to learn and improve products processed in the FIC.
A Forum on Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP)and Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) on Fish Processing was pursued on the first day of the activity. Ms. Ma. Lorelie Dorado, Science Research Specialist II of DOST CALABARZON, facilitated the discussion on GMP. The discussion prompted the participants to share and raise their concerns regarding technical problems experienced during food preparation and product handling.
Ms. Natividad Efondo, Chief-Fish Inspection Unit of BFAR IV-A, facilitated the discussion on HACCP and regulations in fish processing. The discussion provided the participants with the step by step procedures of the regulatory requirements needed to comply with HACCP standards. Moreover, market advantage of fish manufacturing firms with HACCP Certification was also detailed out by Ms. Efondo.
Meanwhile, fish processing training pursued on the second day of the activity. Dr. Ma. Josie Sumague of UPLB’s Institute of Food Science and Technology facilitated the said training which comprised the processing of five fish products such as sardines, bagoong, fishball, smoked and marinated milkfish.
The last day of the activity was allocated for the project visit. DOST Batangas Team together with Dr. Sumague visited the processing facility of FilEntreps Multipurpose Cooperative in Lipa, Batangas, a GIA-CBP beneficiary of DOST, to provide them inputs in upgrading their fish processing business. The cooperative produces skipjack tuna or sinaing na tulingan and continuously market their products within Batangas province. Observation on each process from raw material preparation to packaging and labelling was done in order to specify problems and upgrade the quality of their fish products.
To the participants, the three-day activity has really provided them with knowledge to standardize and upgrade their fish products.