Avoid per­ilous dry­ing of palay along high­ways

Agriculture - - Contents -

THE TRA­DI­TIONAL METHOD method of dry­ing palay on the pave­ments of na­tional high­ways and roads has con­tin­u­ously placed the safety of mo­torists as well as pas­sen­gers at risk, not to men­tion the post-har­vest losses amount­ing to bil­lions of pe­sos due to this old and waste­ful dry­ing process.

In his ef­fort to al­le­vi­ate these peren­nial prob­lems, Fran­cisco “Popoy” Pa­gayon has in­vented a por­ta­ble multi-pur­pose post-har­vest so­lar speed-dry­ing ther­mal tray which he called “Por­ta­sol.” He says that this will erad­i­cate the peren­nial prob­lem and will pro­vide fast, safe, and clean so­lar dry­ers on any ground away from na­tional high­ways and roads.

“Tra­di­tional dry­ing is still be­ing re­sorted to by the farm­ers in the coun­try­side be­cause the usual post-har­vest so­lar dry­ers, which are mere ce­ment slabs, are reg­u­larly turned into bas­ket­ball courts or used for other pur­poses,” Pa­gayon stressed.

It can be re­called that even the De­part­ment of Pub­lic Works and High­ways (DPWH) has banned the dry­ing of palay and other farm pro­duce along na­tional high­ways un­der De­part­ment Or­der No. 41, Se­ries of 2013. The or­der says that in or­der to safe­guard the mo­torists from any un­to­ward ac­ci­dent, it is un­law­ful for any per­son to use any por­tion of a right-of-way, or to con­vert any part of a pub­lic high­way, bridge, wharf, or trail for his own pri­vate use.

Ac­cord­ing to Pa­gayon, his in­ven­tion is a very sim­ple so­lu­tion to an old prob­lem and an im­me­di­ate re­sponse to the need of most Filipino farm­ers to have a sim­ple, easy, more ef­fec­tive, and in­dige­nous dryer that is ex­pected to put an end to the coun­try’s per­sis­tent post-har­vest losses.

Pa­gayon, pres­i­dent of the Filipino In­ven­tors So­ci­ety Pro­duc­ers Co­op­er­a­tive (FISPC), says that Por­ta­sol is ex­pected to en­tirely

rev­o­lu­tion­ize the post-har­vest sys­tem through a prac­ti­cal and af­ford­able yet ef­fec­tive and ef­fi­cient method. Com­pared to the tra­di­tional way of dry­ing palay on road pave­ments and other multi-pur­pose con­crete slabs in the coun­try­side, the Por­ta­sol tray dry­ing sys­tem is more ef­fec­tive, more ef­fi­cient and re­li­able, and ap­par­ently two to three times faster.

He says con­sid­er­able ease and con­ve­nience can be achieved in col­lect­ing, re-sack­ing, and stor­ing dried grains. “Sat­is­fac­tory dry­ing qual­ity is ob­tain­able even if the trays are stacked five to 10 tiers high, although dry­ing time in this case is al­most twice as long and is rec­om­mended only when space is lim­ited.” Aside from dry­ing palay, Pa­gayon says that his in­ven­tion is prac­ti­cal and con­vert­ible, which can also be used in dry­ing corn, beans, veg­eta­bles, fruits, and even fish. Por­ta­sol can also pre­vent pest in­fes­ta­tions, and al­low stor­age ven­ti­la­tion by pro­vid­ing the nec­es­sary breath­ing space be­tween multi-tiers of stored grains to avoid mold, rot, and mildew spoilage. “Por­ta­sol is de­signed for…Filipino farm­ers. This can in­crease the farmer’s in­come, and even­tu­ally [help them] be­come…bet­ter [farm­ers],” he says.

As an in­di­ca­tion of con­fi­dence in the in­ven­tion of Pa­gayon, even the De­part­ment of Science and Tech­nol­ogy (DOST) has tapped the use of Por­ta­sol to help the small fish­er­folk liv­ing along the coastal area of Uyu­gan town in Batanes. Ac­cord­ing to DOST Re­gion 2 Di­rec­tor San­cho Mabb­o­rang, the in­ven­tion of Pa­gayon is ex­pected to help the small fish­er­men to in­crease the pro­duc­tion of their na­tive dried fly­ing fish which they call ‘dibang’. “Por­ta­sol would al­low the ef­fi­cient and also a san­i­tary way of dry­ing the dibang in mul­ti­ple trays and not the same way as be­fore when they dried it on streets and other wide ce­ment sur­faces around the town.”

It was learned that the DOST in Re­gion 2 pro­vided at least two sets of Por­ta­sol trays, in­clud­ing a vac­uum pack­ag­ing ma­chine and pack­ag­ing ma­te­ri­als worth some R500,000 un­der the DOST’s Com­mu­nity Em­pow­er­ment Through Science and Tech­nol­ogy.

Fol­low­ing this de­vel­op­ment, DOST Sec­re­tary For­tu­nato de la Peña has also en­dorsed Por­ta­sol as a so­lar dry­ing op­tion for the dif­fer­ent crops and prod­ucts in the re­gions, which can put an end to ve­hic­u­lar ac­ci­dents caused by road­side palay and corn dry­ing.

Fran­cisco “Popoy” Pa­gayon in­vented a por­ta­ble multi-pur­pose post-har­vest so­lar speed-dry­ing ther­mal tray which he called Por­ta­sol. The tray dry­ing sys­tem is said to be more ef­fec­tive, more ef­fi­cient and re­li­able, and ap­par­ently two to three times faster.

Sat­is­fac­tory dry­ing qual­ity can be ob­tain­able even if the trays are stacked five to 10 tiers high.

With Por­ta­sol, con­sid­er­able ease and con­ve­nience can be achieved in col­lect­ing, re-sack­ing, and stor­ing dried grains.

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