DOST-FNRI developed complementary food blend introduced in virtual tech training

A two-day virtual technology training for Waffletime Inc. on Rice-Mongo-Sesame Ready-to-Cook Blend was held via Zoom.

In attendance were seven participants from Waffletime Inc., two from the Department of Science and Technology Region VI (DOST VI), and six from the Department of Science and Technology – Food and Nutrition Research Institute (DOST-FNRI).

The FNRI emphasizes that the Rice-Mongo-Sesame Ready-to-Cook Blend is one of their efforts to address malnutrition in FIlipino children aged six months and a day to 35 months.

This is supplemented by the Expanded National Nutrition Survey conducted in 2018 stating that two out of ten Filipino children under two years old are underweight, three out of ten FIlipino children under two years old have stunted growth, and one out of ten Filipino children under two years old are wasted or too skinny in proportion to their height.

Moreover, the blend is processed through mixing ground roasted rice mongo and sesame which is rich in minerals, protein, and energy. It is prepared by adding water and cooking to desired consistency.

Consumers may also add mashed fruits like bananas or boiled vegetables like squash to the blend to enhance the flavor and add more nutritional value.

According to the FNRI, the blend consists of 120 kcals, 4 grams of protein, and 24 grams of carbohydrates.

In addition, a 30g pack of the blend is ample in providing 17% of recommended energy and 29% recommended protein intake for children aged six to less than twelve months according to Recommended Energy and Nutrient Intakes (RENI).

It also has a shelf-life of one year when stored in a cool and dry place.

Furthermore, the Rice-Mongo-Sesame Ready-to-Cook Blend’s market potential in the retail aspect as it can be purchased by mothers who want healthy, nutritious, and affordable meals for their infants or toddlers plus it can do well in the institutional aspect as Local Government Units (LGUs), Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) and private organizations may be interested to add baby food items in their feeding and outreach programs and nutrition intervention activities.

Its competitive advantage makes it comparable to commercially-available products in terms of acceptability and packaging and has better nutritional quality than purely cereal-based gruel usually given to children.

The Rice-Mongo-Sesame Ready-to-Cook Blend has been dubbed Grow n’ Glow according to Jaira Marie Jegonia, Waffletime Inc. Quality Assurance/Research and Development Manager.