BY JOHN HOUANIHAU
A LOCAL-based organization, Solomon Islands Development Agency has introduced the processing of dried cassava, kumara, taro, and banana starch into flour in the country.
The development of tropical flour products is seen as a major step taken by the Non-Profitable Organisation to promote a healthy diet in the country. Whilst the tropical products can be used to develop new value-added products for local use and potential export.
Recently a media conference was convened by a team from the organization at the Solomon Islands Development Trust (SIDT) building in the New China Town, Honiara aimed to demonstrate to the public, the available technologies and the processing techniques of producing flours and stock feeds from wastes cassava, kumara, taro and banana peels.
The Solomon Islands Development Agency (SIDA) founder and Chief Exclusive Officer (CEO) Joseph Poha said the aim of the organization is to capitalize on growth and wealth for all people through their resources.
Since the inception of SIDA in October 2021, they have now transformed the concept into physically viable reality.
“We have a no-waste policy, so in our presentation, we present all the useful products from the processing process, which is from flour to animal feeds. So there is no waste.
”As a newly established organization, we are ready to commence cassava production, banana flour production, taro, and livestock feed production once fully set up.
“This year, we have also launched our better-quality and locally made machine to do the processing of dried cassava, taro, kumara, and banana starch into flour,” said Joseph Poha, who is ethnically from Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands.
The overall aim of the organization is to go on further by processing the major species of (dried starchy) root crops in the country into flour, which means they are planning to expand the use of cassava, kumara, taro, and banana starch.
The latest innovation from SIDA can help efforts in introducing these new food products in the country in which tropical root crops flour replaces wheat flour. Diversifying the uses of breadfruit in food product development will enhance the utilization of the Solomon Islands agriculture sector and market potential (both domestic and international).
The introduction of healthy and nutritious bakery products like the production of cassava, kumara, taro, and banana into flour by SIDA is a way forward in developing new opportunities within the agricultural sector of the country as well as among people from rural areas.