Another of CTA’s series of pamphlets on processing.
(click image for full document online)
These pamphlets are broad but short (normally 6 to 8 pages) and give a background about the topic, identifies the things to ask, describes processes, gives trouble shooting information and gives contacts from where further information can be sourced.
In this particular case it describes the production of deep fried banana chips and banana flour..
Its only coincidence that this comes after I start posting about drying! What caught my eye was the high value add obtained for this product which is after all widely available in tropical africa in a somewhat less attractive format.
(click image for full story online)
The product is described as “kosher-certified, all-natural snacks that are dairy-and gluten-free and contain no added sugar, preservatives, colors, flavors, fat or cholesterol”. Each 15g pack contain about a banana and contains 2g fibre and mainly carbohydrate.
The interesting point is the selling price which is US$ 1.50 a pack, probably a result of expensive freeze drying technology and a costly pack but also linked to the multiple product quality claims.
Following on the previous entry that identified the valuable compounds normally left in juice wastes, this article on Food Navigator.com reports on work done by researchers from Cameroon and Belgium.
While citrus is probably the most used source of pectin, this research indicates the potential of tailoring pectin properties through control of the extraction process.
The authors contend that
“Developing countries such as Cameroon import several tons of pectin each year, although there is a vast resource of agricultural products and agro wastes which can be used to produce pectin. In this country, 600,000 metric tons of banana were produced in 2004 with 40 per cent of the total weight of the fruit being wastes which can be used to extract pectin,”
I, however, can not see this type of process making a significant difference in the medium term, because of the shear size of the “resource”. Therefore, maybe some other thoughts next time.