Manila Food and Beverages Expo

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Manila Food and Beverages Expo

It has been said that the food industry will always have its share in the market and that it is the kind of business that will always be in demand. In an effort to strengthen the food industry, the 4th Manila Food and Beverage Expo (mafbex) will be held on June 16-20, 2010 at the World Trade Center. The event  is an international affair and is viewed as the biggest and the most comprehensive food show in the Philippines. This is actually a great opportunity for local and foreign manufacturers, suppliers, distributors and retailers of food and beverage products to meet the demands of the local and international markets. Hence, the event will serve as a venue for small and large-scale food business to attract potential clients and be able to promote local and international food industry. The event will, therefore, showcase the latest food, beverage and equipment ideas from around the globe under one roof. 

Aside from the promised exposure to potential clients,  a mafbex seminar will also be conducted on the following topics:
  • Food Styling
  • Corporate Image Enhancement
  • Rubs and Marinade
  • Pouring
  • Beverage Controlling Your Foods and Costs
  • Catering
  • Punches
  • Marketing 101
  • All About Franchising and Trademark Your Business
  • Cooking for the Palace
  • Garnishing Bar 101
  • Recent Advances in Food Preservation
You can click here for the schedule of seminars. Please note that the seminars are free and it will be on a first come, first serve basis; however, for Seminar Certificate a minimal amount of Php150.00 will be charged. 

If you are in the food and beverage business or want to engage in the food industry, you may want to check out this event. You can also click here for more details.

    Come & Join BC Bloggers 3!

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    I was so excited when I received an e-mail from Pretty Paula, the brain behind BC Bloggers, saying that the BC Bloggers 3 is now officially open! Yay! I have always thought that BC Bloggers is such a wonderful idea, and it is now on its 3rd batch! I've been wondering if there will still be a next batch after the BC Bloggers 1 and 2. Since I have just recently started this blog, Sulong Pinay, I feel that this desperately needs to gain new friends and the opening of the BC Bloggers 3 is just the perfect opportunity to gain some friends. Isn't that wonderful?

    So I am inviting all of you to come and join BC Bloggers 3! Here's the official invitation:

    "Calling all bloggers who want to gain friends in the blogosphere and build links at the same time – BC Bloggers 3 is now open. To join just visit Mommy Diary, read the requirements, and fill out the Application Form."

    Adveture with Fruit Wines

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    fruit wines
    I have always been fascinated by the fruit wines in unique bottles that I always see in the mall. These fruit wines were made from Guyabano, Bignay and Mango; and I have been wondering how these wines tastes. Luckily, I had the opportunity to have a taste of the Strawberry Wine from Baguio City and I actually liked it mainly because of its sweet taste.

    Wines made from fruits other than grapes have been gaining popularity especially in our country where tropical fruits are abundant. We all know that wine is a product of partial or complete alcoholic fermentation of fruit juices, but do you know how to make a wine? Let me share with you how.

    The process of wine-making is quite easy and simple with just four basic steps, namely:
    • Extraction
    • Fermentation
    • Aging
    • Clarification
    But before we go any further, it is important to note that the fruits that are ideal for wine making are those that are table ripe for optimum sugar content, juicy fruits and those with high fermentable sugar content; hence, the most common are mongoes, duhat, pineapple, coconut and the likes. But what catches my attention most was the wine from Banana. Yes, Banana Wine! So I've decided to share with you the recipe for Banana Wine since I find it very uncommon.

    So, here's the recipe that I got for Banana Wine:

    • Wash the fruits, peel and slice thinly
    • Boil the fruits in water until cooked (1 part banana into 1.5 parts of water)
    • Allow to cool and strain/extract juice
    • Add sugar to the banana extract (1 part sugar to every 3 parts extract)
    • Boil and stir the extract to dissolve the sugar
    • Sugar content should be 22°-24°Brix
    • Add yeast (0.05% of the total volume)
    • Cool and place in a clean narrow-mouthed glass containers or demijohns
    • Allow to ferment for 2 to 4 weeks
    • Separate the clean fluid from the sediments
    • Allow the clear liquid to age for at least 2 years
    • Clarify or filter
    • Bottle the wine into clear and sterilized bottles

    PS: Herbal Soap Tips

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    herbal soap

    I have also decided to include some tips and a few reminders to further guide you in the process of herbal soap making. Read along and you may find the following tips on herbal soap making helpful:

    • Since most colorants come in powder form, it is best to prepare 1% solution by dissolving 10g of colorant in 1 liter of refined coconut oil (or any preferred herbal oil) to make a standard colorant. It is also ideal to filter the colorant to remove any solid particles.
    • The ideal amount of oil is 55%-65% of the finished product. The oil could be pure refined oil or a combination of two or more plant oils such as palm oil, olive oil, and castor oil. The combination of various plant oils in desired quantities also determines the price of the soap since other plant oils are more expensive than coconut oil.
    • Ensure that the raw materials are properly weighed and ready before starting with each procedure.
    • It is advisable to pre-mix the preservatives (sodium benzoate) with the extract before mixing it with other ingredients. 
    • Depending on the type of herbal, the recommended combination of extract, fragrance and colorant is shown in the table below:
    herbal soap making guide

    Herbal soap making, as you may have noticed, is quite easy and the raw materials are inexpensive; thus, anyone can venture in herbal soap making business.

    Herbal Soap Making: The Process

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    herbal soap making

    Finally, I’ll now be able to share with you the step by step procedure in making an herbal soap. This is just the basic procedure though. You can always experiment on different combinations of extract, fragrance and colorant, but for a start, the recommended combination to follow is: 25 grams extract and 5 grams fragrance with the standard raw materials of herbal soap. Please remember that the extract determines mainly the type and purpose of the herbal soap; and for commercial purposes, it is ideal to use the fragrance and colorant that is compatible with the extract used.

    Here are the basic steps to follow in herbal soap making:

    Raw Materials:
    • 590g refined coconut oil
    • 360g lye solution
    • 7g coco diethanol amine (CDEA)
    • 8g sodium silicate
    • 28g extract
    • 5g fragrance
    • 2g sodium benzoate (preservative)
    • Q.S. (quality sufficient or quality standard) oil-soluble colorant
    • pails
    • mixing bowls or containers
    • mixer, either electrical or manual
    • polyethylene sheet
    • table cutter or portable cutter
    • weighing scale or beam balance
    • spatula or scraper
    • calypso plastic for packaging
    1. Add the desired amount of oil-soluble colorant to the refined coconut oil. Set aside.
    2. Mix sodium benzoate in extract and set aside.
    3. Obtain 360g lye solution from previously prepared stock solution.
    4. Add the lye solution to the dyed refined coconut oil and stir continuously until slightly thick and opaque in appearance. This means that the mixture shows sign of "tracing" which refers to the consistency or thickness of the soap.
    5. Add all the additives one by one in the soap mixture, starting from CDEA, sodium silicate, extract with sodium benzoate and fragrance. Stir until all the ingredients are blended.
    6. Pour the soap mixture in the molder with polyethylene sheet. The sheet prevents the soap from sticking to the sides of the molder.
    7. Allow the soap mixture to cool and harden. It will take about 4 to 6 hours for the soap to harden.
    8. Turn the molder upside down to remove the soap.
    9. Scrape the exposed portion of the hardened soap using a spatula or scraper to remove the excess particles formed by the moisture in soap.
    10. Allow the soap to stay at room temperature for 2 hours to stabilize the soap. This period is called "curing" of the soap.
    11. Cut the soap into desired sizes approximately weighing 100g each using a table cutter or portable cutter.
    12. Clean the edges of the cut soap.
    13. Pack the soap. Always remember that an attractive packaging adds to the marketability of the soap.
    Please not that with the above formulation, you can produce 1.0kg of herbal bath soap or 10 pieces of 100g. soap. 
    It is also important to remember that  it is best to use the soap seven days after curing or aging.

    Get to Know the Herbal Soap Extracts

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    herbal soap extracts

    Are you now ready to make your own herbal soap? Hmmmm… Not so fast… Before we go to the step by step procedure in herbal soap making, let us first take a peek at the various herbal extracts used and the benefits that may be derived from each type of herbal extract.

    The most popular in the list is the Papaya extract. The enzyme in papaya, called papain, is know to smoothen and whiten skin through regular use; hence, its popularity among Filipino women. Since the papaya fruit is the source of this extract, it is worthy to note that the green or unripe papaya contains more papain enzyme than the ripe one and is therefore, the ideal one to use more maximum effectiveness.

    Carrot extract on the other hand, is rich with beta carotene which acts as an antioxidant that blocks the action of free radicals that tends to damage our cells. Since most of us are in the city and are frequently exposed to pollution and other harmful elements and chemicals in the environment, it is believed that bathing regularly using carrot soaps may help us rid of the free radicals that may cause skin cancer. In addition, carrot extract is also believed to have an anti-aging effect that gives a youth glow.

    If you wish to soothe a burning sensation caused by sunburns, then Cucumber extract should be used. Why? Because cucumber is known to cool, heal and soothe irritated skin due to rashes, pimple breakouts or sunburn.

    For antibacterial and antifungal properties, Tea Tree Oil extract is the answer. This particular extract has been proven to be a powerful natural antiviral, antibacterial and anti-fungal medicine. It is a very effective remedy against countless skin ailments and infections such as athlete’s foot, dandruff, acne, blackheads and insect bites.

    Those are only some of the extracts that are commonly used, you just have to choose which herbal extract use wish to use based on the benefits that you want to achieve.

    Time to Prepare the Lye Solution

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    lye solution for herbal soap

    In my previous post I've often talked about lye solution, but how can we properly prepare a lye solution? Allow me to share with you the step by step procedure which I was able to acquire based from my research.

    Raw Materials:
    • 2kg. caustic soda
    • 5kg. water
    • pail or conatainer
    • basin with cold water
    • hydrometer
    • wooden stick, stainless steel paddle or plastic pipe 
    • Add the pre-weighed 2.0kg. caustic soda in a pail containing 5.0kg. water. Stir with the use of a wooden stick, stainless steel paddle or plastic pipe. Be sure to avoid using aluminum rod and containers because these react to the caustic soda. After mixing the caustic soda and water, you will notice that the container will become warm.
    • Place the pail in a basin with cold water (but not necessarily with ice) and allow the solution to cool. This is referred to as the "cold water bath". Continue stirring until the caustic soda is fully dissolved and the solution reaches room temperature.
    • Use the hydrometer to check the density of the lye solution in the container. The reading should be approximately 36°Baume.
    The finished product will be the lye solution that will be used in making herbal bath soaps which will be discussed in detail in my next post.

    Soap Making Process: An Overview

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    the basic of soap making

    Did you know that in soap making, the process of mixing lye solution and oil is technically called "saponification"? During this process, soap and glycerol are produced. Soap can actually be made using the boiled, semi-boiled or cold process; but of these three processes, the simplest method is the cold process. Just to give us an idea, let's take a look at these processes:

    • Boiled Process - since animal fat or tallow is in solid form, boiled process is used so that the high temperature will melt the fat in order to produce a perfect soap. The finished product called the "neat soap" is produced by removing glycerol through the application of salt. Unfortunately, only the multi-nationals and big companies have the capacity to use this method because of the huge capital requirement for this technology.
    • Semi-Boiled Process - under this method, temperature is kept moderate and glycerol is not removed. This is the method normally used in producing commercial or ordinary soaps, including transparent soaps.
    • Cold Process - this is the process used in making herbal bath soaps wherein the lye solution and oil are mixed continuously at room temperature to produce the desired texture. And just like in the semi-boiled process, glycerol is also incorporated in the soap. As I have already told you, this is the simplest method among the three processes of saponification and requirement for the equipment are also minimal.
    After going through the different methods of saponification, let us now go over the 5 major steps involved in soap making:

    1. Lye Preparation - it has been said that the solution is the most crucial part in soap preparation and it is prepared by mixing 1kg. of caustic soda to 2.5kg. of water or 1:2.5 proportion. Be really careful with caustic soda because exceeding the required amount would definitely cause itchiness when using the soap. Lack of caustic soda, on the other hand, may result in very oily soap product. Hence, following the recommended proportion and mastering its preparation is of great importance in obtaining a good quality lye solution. (No need to worry because preparation of the lye solution will be discussed in detail in my succeeding post.)
    2. Soap Mixing - this involves the mixing of the fat blend, lye solution and additives. During this process, constant stirring is required, either manually or through the use of an electric mixer, to obtain the right texture.
    3. Cutting - the hardened soap may now be cut into bars or into whatever shape you desire.
    4. Cleaning - unnecessary curves and rough edges of soap bars has to be removed using a sharp knife or a cutter.
    5. Packaging - finished products now has to be packed and be made ready for the marketing.
    At this point, let us look at the basic equipment and utensils needed in soap making:

    • Weighing Scale/Beam Balance - used to weigh the ingredients and raw materials
    • Hydrometer - used to check or determine the specific density of the lye solution to be prepared or used.
    • Mixer (electric/manual)
    • Molder or soap tray - this is where the soap mixture is poured and allowed to harden
    • Pails/Plastic Containers - used as receptacles for the raw materials or used as mixing tanks
    • Cutter - used to cut the hardened soap into desired sizes
    Soap making looks quite simple, huh? *wink*

    Meet Our Best Bathroom Buddy

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    What's in a Soap

    How well do you know your favorite soap? Have you ever wondered what's in a soap? Why some soaps are mild and why some makes our skin itchy?

    Soaps are basically made up of fat blend or oil, lye solution and additives; however, adding fillers and builders can be an option. These fillers and builders are also optional in herbal soap making.

    The fat blend is one of the main ingredients in soap preparation, without this and the lye solution, no soap will be produced. The fat derived from animals is normally called "tallow"; however, in herbal soap preparation, the oil from plant with beneficial aromatic properties are used instead. But since our country is abundant with coconut oil, this is just perfect for use in herbal soaps.
    A single type of oil or a combination of two or more oils may be used as fat blend. For example, coconut oil may be used alone, or it may be combined with castor oil and palm oil. The ideal amount of fat blend in soap must range from 55% to 65%.

    Another main ingredient in soap making is the lye solution, which is a liquid solution of caustic soda prepared by the addition of a strong alkali, such as sodium hydroxide, in water.

    Other ingredients are also added to enhance the quality and cosmetic values of soaps, and these ingredients are also known as additives. Normally, soaps have the following additives:
    • Foam boosters such as Coco Diethanol Amine (CDEA) is used to enhance the the foaming property of the soap in both hard and soft water.
    • Sodium Silicate determines the hardness or the softness of the soap.
    • Extracts are used primarily to give the soap a distinct quality and characteristic. In herbal soaps, extracts from herbs, fruits and vegetables are added, such as papaya, guava, tomato, and kalamansi extracts.
    • Fragrance of course gives the soap its distinct smell.
    • Oil-soluble colorant, on the other hand, gives the soap its desired color.
    • Preservatives such as sodium benzoate extends the soaps' shelf-life.
    The challenge now is to master the right combination of additives to give the soap an outstanding quality and characteristic which often times becomes the soap makers' trade secret. 

    April 12-18: Herbal Soaps

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    Since this blog is my newest "baby" and it was only now that I was able to somehow find time to maintain my 3 blogs, I have decided to feature one topic per week so as to make my topics more organized and not confuse my readers.

    For this week, I have decided to share with you articles on soap making, preparation of stock lye solution, herbal bath soap, choosing the ideal herbal extract for your soap, and starting a business in herbal bath soap. You may be asking what made me decide to choose soap making as my first featured topic for the week? Well, the summer heat has become so unbearable and I know that everyone enjoys a refreshing bath, and I cannot imagine bathing or washing without a soap. Why use soap? Simple because it aids in the cleansing process, making all the dirt and grime slide off the surface being scrubbed clean. However, over the years, soap has acquired a variety of other functions other than as a cleansing agent; hence, soap has acquired a variety of other functions and has since been formulated to conform to consumers' needs and preferences.

    herbal bath soaps

    Herbal soaps which are essentially toilet or bath soaps, derive their characteristics from the plant extracts which make the soaps germicidal, moisturizing, rejuvenating, or whitening. As such, herbal soaps comprise an assortment of "flavors" named after their specific sources of extracts, such as papaya, avocado, banana, calamansi, tomato, cucumber, and even oatmeal. With regard to squalene soap, this is ranked alongside the herbals in terms of the claimed beneficial effects on the skin despite the shark's oil in it.

    On the business side, it was in the late 80's when the herbal soap has captured and maintained a 20% share in the market. Despite the very attractive packaging and the compactness of  the bath soaps being manufactured by multi-national companies, the demand for herbal soaps remains high and consumers continues to get hooked with herbal soaps due to the assurance of a clearer, smoother, fairer and young-looking skin.

    As a matter of fact, some locally manufactured herbal soaps have already found their way in the international market. A shift in consumer preference toward natural ingredients has become a contributing factor to the growing popularity of herbal soaps, which in turn makes the herbal soap making a more profitable undertaking.

    Eco Show Towards a Greener Earth

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    1st Philippine International Eco Show

    In managing a business, or if  you are still trying to set-up your own business, focus should not only be on making profit but social responsibility must also be given priority and this includes offering products and services that are eco-friendly. In fact, the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), an attached agency of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has organized the 1st Philippine International Eco-Show which will be held on August 26-28, 2010 at the SMX Convention Center, Mall of Asia Complex in Pasay City. This is an effort to showcase the diverse and innovative eco-friendly products and services made available by the finest companies and aco-entrepreneurs in the country.

    By attending this eco-show, you will not only be able to explore the enormous business possibilities for environment-friendly products and services, but you will also have the opportunity to expand your network with industry players and bands engaged in eco-friendly and sustainable pursuits and advocacies. Furthermore, you will also have the chance to carve your niche in the current 410 billion EURO global market for environmental goods and services.

    The event will highlight the different facets of the budding eco-market, and will feature the following eco-zones:
    • Eco-Industrial Zone - construction materials and solutions for sustainable architecture and "greenbuilding"; electronic parts, machinery and equipment, and motor vehicle parts that demonstrate efficient energy practice for waste reduction; and innovative and alternative industrial products and inventions.
    • Eco-Lifestyle Zone - natural and nutritious food and supplements, natural personal care items, aromatherapy fragrances, and eco-places that offer healthy and wholesome living options.
    • Eco-Advocate Zone - connect with passionate environmental stewards. This is actually where the public and private sector unite towards the drive for eco-sustainability. In addition, it will also feature government-initiated products that focuses on renewable energy, waste management and possible solution the air pollution.
    Aside from the exhibit, the Eco-Show will also have the following events:
    • Eco-Conference - this will be a 2-day activity where you'll be able to join the academe and global stakeholders in a conference that is meant to strengthen the industry's commitments and goals, and determine its future direction and trends.
    • Philippine International Eco-Awards - this is open to all local exhibitors offering eco-friendly products and services in the local and international markets, as well as individuals with noteworthy achievements in environmental advocacies.
    • Eco-Philippines Photography Tilt - this activity is open to all professional and amateur photography enthusiasts nationwide.
    There's nothing to lose in attending this great event, on the contrary, there's is much to gain from this eco-show that is geared towards providing eco-solutions for a greener tomorrow.

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