09 Nov

Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology Enterprises Limited (JKUATES) in Juja, Kenya 2018

JKUATES received from the Japanese inventor and “champion” of instant noodles, the company NISSIN, a laboratory and a production plant to produce ready meals with instant noodles as a gift.

Based on well-known Kenyan raw materials with a positive health image (whole grain wheat flour “atta” and sorghum), formulations in kilogram-scale should be tested, optimized and then tested in the scale-up on machinability.

The availability of different wheat flours from the regional mills was first tested and additionally rice flour, bean flour and calcium carbonate were tested as modifiers for processing, taste and colour. Intensive discussions were held on issues of packaging material and packaging design. With 11 new formulations, the foundation stone for the future optimization of the formulations and technology was laid.

The departure from Nairobi, i.e. “out of Africa”, was not allowed to end without a visit to the Karen Blixen Museum.

09 Nov

Airlangga University Surabaya, Indonesia 2018

At the Airlangga University, the biggest university in Surabaya, the Faculty of Fisheries and Marine has been in existence for several years. The faculty of mainly young, well-educated scientists are interested to improve:

The internal training and the acquisition of knowledge

Teaching methods in lecture and laboratory work

The laboratory work itself

Linking with the regional economy

Networking with foreign universities and research institutions

For me a good opportunity to point out the manifold potential initiatives of the enormous number of students. In addition to frontal instruction, examples in lectures and internships were used to use video clips by students, handicraft skills and sensual-sensory experiences in the laboratory work, to involve the students even more intensively in their studies.

I had also the opportunity to refer to one of my favourite topics – the essential oils – at the pharmaceutical faculty.

Contacts with the regional economy have been stabilised and rebuilt to better orient education to the needs of the labour market.

27 May

Distillation of essential oils – Macedonia 2018

The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia offers the best conditions for cultivation and wild collection of medicinal and spice plants due to its favourable climatic conditions.
My mission in spring 2018 under the auspices of the organisation “Swisscontact-Senior Expert Corps” was aimed at the take up operation and process optimization of an existing distillation plant.
Due to abnormally low temperatures of up to minus 18 °C, we had considerable difficulties in the supply of steam, which could be remedied with increasing temperatures and a great commitment of the service engineers from Skopje.
During the test, it was found that technical changes are needed to improve the yield of the oils, but they will take a few weeks.
I will certainly travel to Macedonia again in the autumn of 2018 to complete the trials. Until then, the planned mini-laboratory will also be set up and we can evaluate the results of the laboratory system with those of the production plant.