In partnership with the Agusan del Sur State College of Agriculture and Technology (ASSCAT), DOST-Caraga provided a series of virtual training to 17 researchers as part of the upskilling activities in product development techniques for the Agri-Food Processing and Innovation Center.

The 6-part training that ran from May to June 2021 included topics on 5S of Good Housekeeping, Product Development and Food Formulation, Operation and Maintenance of Food Processing Equipment, Marketing, Technology Transfer and Commercialization, Packaging and Labelling, and Food Safety. These topics were discussed by experts from DOST-Caraga, University of the Philippines, Mindanao State University, Central Philippine University, and Summit Consultancy and Research Services.

The ASSCAT Agri-Food Processing and Innovation Center is established in partnership with DOST-Caraga. It is among the 18 operational food innovation centers (FIC) in the country and the second in the region following the FIC in the Caraga State University (CSU).

To help increase the number of research and development activities related to innovation and reformulation of quality food products, DOST-Caraga in 2020 allocated fund support for the ASSCAT FIC to acquire new food processing equipment including the Vacuum Fryer, Spray Dryer and Autoclave. The project also aims to ensure the quality of food products produced or manufactured comply with the Philippine National Standard, RA 10611 (Food Safety Act of 2013) and international standards (CODEX).

In his message, DOST-Caraga Technical Support Services (TSS) Division Chief Engr. Noel M. Ajoc assures that DOST-Caraga will continue its support to the center through technical assistance for FIC personnel amid the challenges of COVID-19 pandemic.

ASSCAT President Dr. Joy Capistrano attended the training and expressed their commitment in the upskilling of FIC researchers to utilize raw materials available in the province and help address food security issues.

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