Taro (Colocasia esculenta (L.) Schott) and sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas) are good sources of carbohydrate. However, their utilization are limited to traditional food products, such as boiled/steamed, grilled or deep-fried foods. Processing of both tubers into flours would diversify their utilization as they can be used both as ingredients and substitution of wheat, rice or sticky rice flours in a variety of food preparation.
This would also support the government program on local food-based diversification, giving the added value and good image into the products as well as enhancing the development of agro-based industry, particularly in the rural area. Taro and sweet potato were processed into flours and subsequently the composite flour of 60% taro and 40% sweet potato was prepared into chips (Figure). Introducing these products was performed at Pelaga Village, Badung District, Bali toward women farmer’s group of ‘Mekar Sari” in 2013. The nutritional composition of product is presented in Table 1.
The production cost (C) of chips from one kg of composite flours was IDR 58,273,75. This covered the raw material, labor and equipment depreciation costs. While revenue (R) obtained from the product outputs (50 packs of chips) was IDR 75,000, assuming that the selling price was IDR 1,500 per pack. The R/C ratio was 1,29 for chips, suggesting that this product was economically feasible.
The added values of both taro and sweet potato processing into flours and chips compared to their initial forms as fresh tubers can be seen in Table 2. Selling of each 10 kg of taro and sweet potato fresh tubers would only give revenue of IDR 25,000, while processing them into flours (with yield recovery of 17%) gave 3.4-folds revenue.
Subsequent processing into chips showed higher revenues which was 9.1 folds compared to the fresh tubers. Women farmer’s group gave positive response to these introducing products. They could get other knowledge in tubers-based foods processing besides the traditional ones as well as get an idea for home-industry development.
Hereinafter, this study reflects that processing of local tubers into food products is economically profitable and prospective to be disseminated. However, supports from other stakeholders (government/private sector/NGOs) through training/extension for improving the women skills, simple equipments, capitals and marketing facilities are still needed.
Dian Adi Anggraeni Elizabeth