MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) has opened the second regional Food Innovation Center (FIC) in the Cagayan State University (CSU) campus in Carig, Tuguegarao City.
The formal opening of the FIC was one of the highlights of the DOST’s three-day Science and Technology Fair which opened last Monday at the CSU campus.
DOST Secretary Mario Montejo said that the FIC is expected to serve as a hub for innovations and provide technical support to the bustling food industry in Region 2.
The DOST opened the first FIC in the Philippine Women’s College-Davao City last May.
Among the food processing equipment provided by the DOST to help set up the FICs are an immersion freezer, a vacuum packaging machine, a water retort, a vacuum fryer, a spray dryer, a vacuum evaporator and a freeze dryer.
Carol Yorobe, DOST Undersecretary for Regional Operations, said that they are targeting to open seven FICs this year, with the goal of having an FIC in all regions by 2016.
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Yorobe said that the DOST has a P66-million budget this year for the construction and provision of equipment for seven FICs.
Yorobe said the FIC establishment effort was one of the projects under the DOST’s High Impact Technology Solutions (HITS) program.
The DOST requires an FIC to be located inside either a state university and college or a private higher educational institution so as to give college students access to a facility with modern equipment where they can study and pursue research and development on food processing and development.
The FIC will also allow food processing firms to use the modern equipment and facilities to process their food products and also undertake food processing research and development.