Food packed well

Defence Food Research Laboratory director Amarinder Singh Bawa discusses his organisation's ambitious plans and achievements

Chennai: Processed food development and its packaging for a longer shelf-life is one segment where the defence technologies are being transferred to the civilian sector in India in good numbers.

Many of the technologies that enable to manufacture ready-to-eat pulav, curry or tender coconut water in packets and other packaged food stuff were developed for the country's defence forces at the Mysore-based Defence Food Research Laboratory (DFRL) and have since then been transferred to the Indian corporate sector.

The latest technology transfer under process is the process of making sweet palm toddy or neera. DFRL developed the know-how jointly with the Central Food Technology Research Institute (CFTRI) Mysore.

Says DFRL director Amarinder Singh Bawa: "We developed this for the Karnataka state government which wanted to help the farmers. Our technology will delay the fermentation of palm toddy by two months so that a larger market could be targeted."

A master's degree-holder in food technology from the Central Food Technological Research Institute, Mysore, Bawa went to Canada on a Canadian Commonwealth fellowship to complete MSc in meat science and a doctorate in food science from the University of Guelph.