USTP, Dole Philippines, Inc. launch collaborative research study
By Dr. Arnil C. Emata, Research Consultant, USTP Office of the Director for Research Centers and Institutes
On July 12, 2023, the University of Science and Technology of Southern Philippines (USTP) and Dole Philippines, Inc. (Stanfilco Division) successfully launched their collaborative research study at the USTP Cagayan de Oro boardroom to attain zero waste in the latter’s landfills.
The research study is titled “Microbial and Nutritional Profile of the Black Soldier Fly (BSF), Hermetia Illucens, Larvae Fed Banana Rejects Alone or In Combination with Animal Manure and Fish Offals.”
In this first study, the banana rejects, which can reach up to five (5) tons daily from Dole banana plantations throughout Mindanao, will be fed to the larvae of BSF to produce frass (shedding of insect waste and other matters) and larvae, which will be sources of nutrients for animal feed ingredients, lipids for biodiesel and chitin, which USTP’s Institute for Material Science and Nanotechnology has recently extracted and which has been reported to suppress fungal diseases devastating several plantations, not only of bananas but other fruits as well, globally.
Dubbed the super fly, BSF is now the most popular insect that can address several of the world’s current problems: waste dispersal, protein and fat supply for the livestock and aquaculture demand, soil regeneration, and the impact of climate change.
The study also aims to investigate the frass in combination with Effective Microorganisms and chitin in suppressing or eliminating the dreaded Fusarium or Panama Disease affecting bananas in vitro and later in soil application. The initial study site will be an improvised shed before the Technology Learning Center.
Dr. Ambrosio B. Cultura II, the USTP System President, attended the launching, together with the university’s research teams led by Dr. Greg M. Cubio, the Director for Research Centers and Institutes, and the Dole Philippines, Inc. Research Team led by Ms. Carolyn R. Villoceno, Senior Head of the Business Innovations, and Sustainability Department.
In a recorded message, Ms. Gina T. Daypuyart, Environment, Health, Safety, and Sustainability Department Manager of Dole Philippines, Inc., shared that the research study will form part of the company’s advocacy to have zero waste in its landfills.
The USTP System President thanked Dole Philippines, Inc. for funding the study and agreeing to be an industry partner and one of the locators at the Agropolis Techno Park in USTP Claveria.
During the program, both parties also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) participated by the following officials: (seated from left to right) Engr. Regine Agusan, Engineer III, Provincial Planning and Development Office, Misamis Oriental; Dr. Ambrosio B. Cultura II, USTP System President; and Carolyn R. Villoceno, Senior Head, Business Innovations and Sustainability, Dole Philippines, Inc., representing Ms. Gina T. Daypuyart, Environment, Health, Safety and Sustainability Department Manager.
Standing to witness the event are Dr. Robert John P. Guerero, Head of the Institute for Material Science and Nanotechnology, USTP System; Dr. Arnil C. Emata, Research Consultant, Office of the Director for Research Centers and Institutes, USTP System; Dr. Greg M. Cubio, Director for Research Centers and Institutes, USTP System; Mr. Jeffrey F. Mangaron, Business Innovations and Sustainability Documentation and Stanfilco Promise Lead, Dole Philippines, Inc.; and Engr. Renato Panamugan, Engineering Head – Bukidnon South, Dole Philippines, Inc.
Contributions from Ms. Aire Jade L. Taga, USTP Claveria STRATCOMM