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Add To Calendar 25/02/2016 17:00:0025/02/2016 17:20:00America/ChicagoAquaculture 2016ENHANCING THE PHILIPPINE SEA CUCUMBER INDUSTRY THROUGH THE DEVELOPMENT OF AN APPROPRIATE PROCESSING TECHNOLOGY   Versailles 3The World Aquaculture Societyjohnc@was.orgfalseanrl65yqlzh3g1q0dme13067DD/MM/YYYY


Ronel S. Pangan*, Kevin F. Yaptenco, Sharmaine N. Pardua,
 and Jonnel Andrew C. Duque
Institute of Agricultural Engineering  
College of Engineering and Agro-industrial Technology
University of the Philippines
Los Baños, Philippines

Holothurians, commonly known as sea cucumbers, have been harvested for over a thousand years in the Indo-Pacific regions to supply markets in Asia for beche-de-mer or trepang (the dried form of sea cucumber). The demand for trepang has been growing, especially with the re-entry of China in the world market during the 1980s. Its global market is controlled by Chinese traders where the three main markets are Hong Kong, Singapore, and Taiwan.

With the high demand both for local and international consumption, many Filipino fishermen have ventured into the processing of sea cucumbers. However, the method employed in the processing of sea cucumber is still traditional where the product quality is poor resulting to lower buying cost by the consolidators who are also the exporters. Based from the buying price of consolidators, the difference in the price can reach as high as 70%. For example, dried class A H. scabra (large) is priced at P4,300.00 ($95) per kilo while class B or reject is only P1,350.00 ($30) per kilo. There is a need therefore to develop a processing technology to produce high quality products.

To answer the need to develop a technology to improve the quality of processed sea cucumber and eventually increase the income of sea cucumber processors, a hygienic and profitable way of processing sea cucumber was developed which is appropriate for village-level application. The developed processing method involved the design and fabrication of a preparation table, a boiling apparatus, a cleaning/scraping machine and a dryer. The system was designed to process 100 kilos of fresh sea cucumber in a single batch. As compared to the traditional processing method, product produced is of better quality resulting to a much higher selling price for the fishermen. Furthermore, the developed technology complies with the processing standards set by the Philippines' Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Standards (BAFS) wherein, use of corals or steel brushes in cleaning were eliminated, smoke contamination was avoided and quality was maintained wherein no smoke odor, decay and scorch marks are present in the product. The developed technology is very easy to operate and the machines are very easy to fabricate even in small shops.  

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