The students of the College of Natural Resources at Lobesa in Punakha have attempted to do something different. The students developed food products from scratch as part of their academic research. The 15 food products were introduced during the student research meet in the college recently.
For six months, the students learnt how to transform vegetables and fruits into value-added food products ready for market. The students developed the products following a consumer preference survey and a market feasibility study with the local business communities in Wangdue Phodrang and Punakha.
And Quinoa crackers got an overwhelming response from the public.
“Quinoa is considered to be the mother of all grains and is also one of the superfoods containing high protein and all the essential amino acids. Quinoa cracker is ready to eat the product. You can munch it anytime, anywhere, wherever you like it,” said Shapan Prasad Biswakarma, one of the developers of Quinoa crackers.
Likewise, students came out with products such as cactus wine, lemon ginger tea, guava wine, instant bathup and plant-based butter. The products are expected to hit the market by next year.
“After the graduation, we are planning to take our products forward to the different government agencies whereby they will validate us with food handler licenses and food safety licenses due to which our products can have a better standard in the market. We are expecting products to reach the market by the end of 2023,” added Shapan.
The research findings will be uploaded online in the college journal.
“We are hoping that the outcome and the findings of our students in terms of the research findings will be looked into for policy amendments because most of the students have conducted their research in their field of conservation and natural resource management,” said Lobzang Penjor, Research and Liaison Officer of the college.
The college started the student research meet last year to create a platform to present the findings of the students’ research. The college plans to make it an annual event.
Changa Dorji, Punakha
Edited by Sonam Pem