FISH PASTE BAGOONG AND FISH SAUCE PATIS IN PANGASINAN PHILIPPINES
Bagoong and Green Manggo is mouth watering
FISH PASTE (BAGOONG) AND FISH SAUCE (PATIS) FROM PANGASINAN, PHILIPPINES. Fish paste (bagoong) and fish sauce (patis) are very popular in our country, Philippines. Some of our native dishes (like pinakbet, dinengdeng or bulanglang) will never be complete without bagoong, as stated by Salazar (a researcher in the making of bagoong). Aside from being popular in our country, fish paste is also a very good export commodity. Large amounts of fish and shrimp paste exports go to Korea, U.S.A., Canada and Saudi Arabia. Is estimated that out of the 42% total of processed food exported, 3.5% composes the exportation of bagoong produced only in the province of Pangasinan. Bagoong does not only add flavor to certain dishes, but is also a good low-cost source of protein. Besides protein, dilis is rich in mineral salts, Vitamin A and niacin. As a source of protein and minerals, dilis is as good as milk. Its calcium content is more readily used by the animal body than that in milk (Science Modules by UP Science Education Center, 1982). Being considered as a consumer good and as one of the basic necessities of man for most Filipinos especially those in Pangasinan and in the Ilocos provinces, bagoong nowadays is being marketed in strategic places like BaguioCity and Manila, though quality standard may be a bit sacrificed. Since there is a growing demand for the product to availability in places where there is a high unsatisfied demand maybe considered as an opportunity to soon-to-be successful bagoong dealers or even producers.
Consequently there are technicalities in the preparation of bagoong that may affect its marketability. Bagoong is produced by a process called fermentation. Fermentation refers to the chemical changes in plant and animal matter caused by microorganisms. These microorganisms act on such organic matter as starcher, proteins, fats, and oils. These materials are broken into simple substances with changes in tastes, smell and odor. Actually enzymes or the chemical substances produced by the living cells of microorganism cause fermentation. Since ancient times, bacteria, yeasts and molds, had been found to cause changes in the preparation of foods, beverages, textiles and leather.
But some organisms as putrefaction or decay molds cause harmful changes. Putrefaction causes bad odor or poison in food. Cold storage, freezing, smoking and other methods like canning or bottling prevent putrefaction. Action of microorganisms is determined by several factors:
1. The right choice of microorganism because the enzyme of each organism acts or specific substances to make specific products.
2. Microorganisms need the right growth substances carbohydrates and inorganic salts like ammonium compounds and prophates.
3. Acidity and temperature affect the organisms’ growth. each organism lives best in a certain level of acidity and temperature. Too low acidity might cause other organisms to live. Too high acidity might kill the organism. Too high a temperature might also kill the organism.
4. Air affects the organisms. Some organisms need air, others are killed by it.
During bagoong fermentation, make sure no putrefaction or decay occurs due to bacterial action. If the bagoong becomes basic instead of acidic due to a collection of basic products of protein breakdown such as ammonia, then putrefaction has occurred.
Salt affects the activity of microorganisms as well as the action of the enzymes present in the fish. Salt is commonly used as a food preservative. However too much salt prevents the action of bacteria and enzymes in any food. material, causes a longer time for the fermentation on aging of bagoong, and slows down the formation of a pleasant flavor. A salt to-fish mixture of 1 part s alt to 2 parts fish (1:2 ratio) or 2 parts salt to 3 parts fish (2:3 ratio) was found as too much salt. Under this ratios, the aging time took from three to six months.
A salt-fish mixture with too little salt causes microorganisms to grow and the bagoong will undergo petrifaction and have a bad smell. Good ratios of salt-fish mixtures are 1:4, 2:7 or 1:3 from less to more salt. Under these ratios the amount of bacteria in the salt-fish mixture decreases fast, the longer it is left in the mixture.
The length of time of fermentation may be determined by knowing the best temperature and the best acid range for the fermentation of the fish-salt mixture.
Studying at 60°C kills bacteria but at the same time it stops the activity of enzymes. The ideal temperature range for bagoong fermentation is from 37°C to 45°C.
Enzymes are likewise affected by acids and bases. They are more active in an acid range of from pH 5.4 to pH 6.0.
The Bureau of Food and Drugs Administration gives the following requirements for bagoong:
Total solids 40 %
Protein 12.5 %
Salt (Sodium Chloride) 20 to 25 %
According to Cruz (1996) in her study “Effectiveness of Bromelain from Pineapple in Bagoong making” the fermentation period of fish in bagoong making is hastened or shortened when bromelain extracted from pineapple fruits, leaves and fruit peelings is added. Pineapple fruit gave the shortest period of fermentation.
She further concluded:
The organolyptic quality of the fish bagoong measured through the color, taste and flavors is best in the fish with bromelain from fruits of pineapple. These characteristic quality are improved as the bagoong is stored for longer period.
The shelf life of fish bagoong is a little bit longer when bromelain from pineapple fruit is added during the fermentation period.
It may pointed out that management is composed of several responsibilities such a finance, production, marketing and the like. As such, factors that affect an organization prior to marketing must also be dealt with to assure the success of any marketing strategies or programs.
In the Baseline Study of the twelve region of the Philippines. specifically Region I by Up ISSI in May 1981, the food manufacturing establishments as of 1975 were around 3380. Of the number, 273 (8.1 %) belonged to the growth industry subsector represented by slaughtering, meat dressing and ham, bacon and native sausage manufacturing firms, 44 (16.1 %); ice cream, ice drops and ice candy factories 32 (11.7 %); smoked fish , patis and bagoong factories 90 (33.0 %); and sugar confectionery enterprises, 107(39.2 %). These establishments were concentrated in the province of Pangasinan, La Union, Ilocos Norte and Benguet. Among these growth firms, the cottage industry sector comprised 211 establishments (77.3 %) while 62 (22.7 %) contributed the small-scale industry sector.
The food processing industry consists of enterprises involved in the preservation packaging and marketing of food products for the consumer market with products ranging from ham, bacon, chicharon, smoked fish, bagoong, ice cream, ice drops, ice candy and candy. The main raw materials used are sugar, milk, starch, salt, shrimp, fish and meat which are mostly available the region. The food industry is moderately capital-incentive and its factory operations are uncomplicated, making it easily operational.
Regarding marketing, the industry faces a very bright future owing to the highly diversified nature of its products which serve as a basic need of man. Its market is expanding especially with the introduction of convenience food that suit a growing population.
Bagoong making is a thriving industry of the town of Lingayen, Anda, Bani, Infanta, Bolinao and Binmaley. There are 65 registered operators of bagoong plants with a combined production of approximately 659 metric tons in 1974. This industry is concentrated in Lingayen where 32 out of the 65 manufacturers are based. It is considered as one of the small industries in the Province of Pangasinan (Economic Survey Exercise UP ISSI 1975).
a. Bagoong Pangasinan is popular all over the country. This is a becoming business in Lingayen, Anda, Bani, Infanta, Bolinao and Binmaley. Big Patis manufacturers of Greater Manila get part of their requirfements from the towns.
To improve the status and the marketing capacity of the bagoong industry studies have been undertaken. A study on the status of Bagoong industry was undertaken and important findings of the researcher (E. Salazar) are as follows:
a. Most of the fish supplies for the bagoong industry come from Bicol, QuezonProvince, and nearby Lingayen Gulf. A small portion of the fish supply come from Palawan and other places.
b. Most of the proprietors owned their supplies in processing bagoong products while the rests purchased their products on consignment basis
c. Majority of processors sell their products in their factories and also through deliveries
d. The number one strength of the industry is its bagoong products are made in Lingayen while its number one weaknesses is the diminishing supply of fish
e. Majority in the bagoong processors believed that the industry has bright opportunities as most Filipinos eat the products while pollutions, low level of technology, and competition are threatening the industry’s existence.
f. The effect of the industry’s weaknesses and threats to its modernization are 1.45 and 1.89 equivalent to “problem” and not “serious” respectively.
g. All the eighty bagoong processors asserted that the strengths and opportunities they cited could be exploited.
The Local government, as recommended by Salazar is at present is trying to preserve the industry by employment of some remedial measures as follows.
1. Strengthen the “Gulf War” initiated by President Fidel Ramos to preserve the richness of Lingayen Gulf.
2. Improve bagoong products to attract buyers to buy on factory prices which is much lower than where delivered.
3. TESDA to conduct skills upgrading in bagoong making.
4. Conduct workshops on marketing strategies and information to fully exploit the industry.
In the study conducted by the Bureau of Agricultural Economics in 1979 on Marketing Operation of Sustenance Fishermen in Pangasinan, it was found out that fish in Pangasinan are getting scarce as reported by municipal fishermen. This condition was brought about by the extensive use of dynamite and poison, in addition to fishing by commercial travelers within the boundaries set for sustenance fishing only. But as of this days the Local Government is controlling the unscrupulous method of fishing.
There is one thing that is very good in the Province of Pangasinan in the making of bagoong, more specifically the town of Lingayen. The perfect composition of air and salt mixture in the air and the humidity. Many attempts has been made by several bagoong makers to ferment the fish somewhere else outside Pangasinan but the result is a putrified fish not a fermented fish. The theory of some makers is that the salinity of the air in Pangasinan is a factor why fish fermenting is very ideal in Lingayen, Pangasinan, Philippines. On this theory there is still a need for a scientific study to know the factors. Hopefully, the Bagoong making may continue to boom and provide economic source for the Filipino people. If you are curious why fermented fish sauce is a nutritous food appetizer, why not try it yourself. Even in Americas, bagoong is already available as export from Philippines.