WASTE TO PROFIT. A scientist from the National Fisheries Research and Development Institute (NFRDI) suggests an innovative way to make a living from food waste through value-adding. Shrimp head, one of the most common food wastes, can be processed to become shrimp powder, which is a highly sellable item in the markets, according to NFRDI. (Photo from NFRDI)

To mitigate food waste, the National Fisheries Research and Development Institute (NFRDI) pushed to turn some of it into “something valuable.”

Rosa Bassig, senior science research specialist of the Fisheries Postharvest Research and Development Division of NFRDI, said one of the most common food wastes is shrimp head that can be converted into shrimp powder and can be a potentially good source of income.

Based on her study released Wednesday, one kilogram of fresh shrimp heads can produce about 200 grams of shrimp power.

“Not bad for business, considering that what would have been just a waste was converted into something valuable,” Bassig said.

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The powder can be used as shrimp flavor seasoning, seafood broths, or soups, among others, she added.

The product has a storage life of up to six months when stored at 28-30°C based on a study published in The Philippine Journal of Fisheries.

In a statement, the NFRDI said a shrimp processing plant usually throws away the shrimp heads along with shells and tails.

The waste makes up approximately 50 percent of the raw material, which means almost half of the money spent goes down the drain already, it added.

It also noted that improper disposal of these wastes may cause harm to the environment due to their nutrient-rich properties.

“By turning shrimp heads into powder, food processing manufacturers will not only cut down their wastage but, more importantly, earn profit from otherwise discarded materials,” NFRDI said. (PNA)

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