Back in Batangas

I traveled back to Batangas this week to do a monitoring and evaluation at the E. Zobel Foundation. The E. Zobel Foundation is an adoptor of complementary foods and makes Crunchies as well as the baby food blend. It is amazing how each adoptor is moving toward a common goal of reducing hunger and malnutrition in the Philippines, yet they still have such distinct stories of their own. The E. Zobel Foundation has their complimentary food plant on the grounds of a school. All of the workers at the plant are in a mother’s association that are working toward better nutrition for their children who go to the school. The Crunchies that are produced at this plant are called “SIGLA” crunchies, after the mother’s association that works at the plant producing the products. The E. Zobel Foundation has a lot of other projects that they are working on that help the community. The Zobel family is so powerful in terms of Philippine history that there is a museum made just by the family.

Later in the week, I was able to participate in the Sensory Evaluation Laboratory at FNRI. In this lab, they tested my ability to see colors, discriminate between different tastes and different odors. These tests are used for sensory panelists that will later be used as tasters for the foods that FNRI produces. I was able to pass this test, but I don’t think that I would be able to pass if it got much harder. The point of doing these screening tests is to get a sensory panel that is able to differentiate between different foods and describe those tastes effectively. All foods that FNRI produces in house and via adoptors are required to come to the sensory evaluation laboratory.

During the weekend, we took a trip to Hulugan and Aliw waterfalls in Laguna. I fell less while climbing this time as compared to last week so that was a plus. I got very close to a carabao which made me VERY happy. Apparently you can ride carabaos, so that is my newest goal. I now like lychee, durian and jackfruit. Too bad I won’t be able to get these delicious fruits once I am back in the US.      

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