Pangasinan-Based Company Revives ‘Nutribun’

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The bread product Nutribun, famous in the 70s for being nutritious, is making a comeback after a firm based in Sta. Barbara, Pangasinan reformulated it, calling it enhanced Nutribun.

“We are making it sure that the enhanced Nutribun is a different reformulation, it has different look, but we are giving more nutrition. Unlike the former Nutribun, this time this is softer, smells good, more delicious, and has a very good texture. This is our campaign nowadays, that it could easily be appreciated and eaten by the children,” said Racky Doctor, president of Nutridense Food Manufacturing Corporation, in an interview Thursday.

Back in the 70s, Nutribun is a bread product used in school feeding programs to combat child malnutrition

The bread is a natural source of fiber as it has energen, protein, vitamin A, minerals such as iron, calcium, potassium, and zinc, Doctor said.

He added the idea of coming up with an enhanced Nutribun was formulated with the support of the Department of Science and Technology Food and Nutrition Research Institute and the Department of Trade and Industry sometime in March this year, during the first few weeks of the quarantine period in Luzon.

“In the entire country, we were the first who signified intention to produce the Nutribun. It took us some time to do the production because it wasn’t easy to make it. This is a composition of 50 percent flour and 50 percent squash puree that took longer to process. But I’m happy and inspired knowing that the product will deliver nutrition to the children in need,” Doctor said.

The bread can be bought online or at their factory located at Barangay Malanay in Sta. Barbara town.

“The retail price is in line with the suggested price of the Department of Social Welfare and Development and the Department of Education. For 80 grams, it costs PHP10 and PHP15 for 180 grams,” he said.

Doctor said they are looking for distributors and plan to link with bakeries and groceries for the product to be made available in different stores.

In a separate interview, DOST Pangasinan provincial director Arnold Santos said the product is science-based and contains 500 calories, 264 grams protein, six-milligram iron, and 223-milligram vitamin A from the squash.

“In one event, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles, DOST Secretary Fortunato de la Peña, and FNRI Director Mario Capanzana thought of reviving the Nutribun of the ‘70s,” he said.

This is a government response to address malnutrition, which according to the 2018 Fill the Nutrient Gap Philippine Summary Report of the World Food Program, one-third of Philippine households cannot afford a diet to meet the nutritional needs, he added.

DTI-Pangasinan Provincial Director Natalie Dalaten said DTI is helping Nutridense promote the bread.

“We are helping them to promote the product as it is not only nutritious food but also it is locally manufactured. We are bridging from the producer side to the end consumers, as well as, the farmers (whom the squash supply was sourced). The manufacturer is also creating local employment,” she said.

Nutridense will inaugurate its facility, which can produce 30,000 to 50,000 enhanced Nutribun a day this month. (PNA)

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