LAMUT, Ifugao – The Agri-Aqua Technology Business Incubator (ATBI) of the Ifugao State University (IFSU) has recently started teaching local entrepreneurs how to make soap out of tomatoes and calamansi.
The end product, called Cala-matis Anti-Bacterial Soap, uses ingredients that are abundant in Ifugao.
According to Dr. Lorna Ildefonso, the researcher who concocted the product, the soap can ward off staphylococcus aureus and sandida albicans – bacteria that are present in the body. She said the calamansi and tomato extracts act as natural skin-bleaching agents, addressing dark spots or skin discoloration. The tomato extracts also contribute to a rosy hue on the cheeks and fair glow on the body.
Ildefonso said her study has proven the effectiveness and safety of processing fruits such as tomato, calamansi, and cucumber. With few ingredients, the fruit-based organic products are at par with commercially-available soap brands.
She presented the ingredients and demonstrated the processing of tomato and calamansi into soaps to the trainees then were also made to demonstrate their new-found skills through a return demonstration in which they successfully produced 68 pieces of the “cala-matis” antibacterial bath soap.
ATBI Project Development Officer Norma Appoy said the training aims to equip entrepreneurs with the knowledge and skills for processing, addressing issues such as food security, waste reduction, and sustainable practices. It also seeks to empower participants to become trainers in their community.
The participants expressed gratitude to IFSU for the training, highlighting it introduced new ideas for consideration in their business ventures, and which also helps farmers with the marketing of their products.
Elvira Matabye, one of the participants, said she plans to venture into soap-making soon. – Florida B. Robles