History of Soy Flour, Grits, Flakes, and Cereal-Soy Blends - Part 7


by William Shurtleff and Akiko Aoyagi

 

A Chapter from the Unpublished Manuscript, History of Soybeans and
Soyfoods, 1100 B.C. to the 1980s


©Copyright 2004 Soyfoods Center, Lafayette, Californi
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HISTORY OF SOY FLOUR, GRITS AND CEREAL-SOY BLENDS IN LATIN AMERICA

Soy flour and cereal-soy blends have been used increasingly in Latin America since the mid-1960s. Soy flour is an excellent complement to the region's corn-based diet, since it contains 9 times more tryptophan and 10 times more lysine than corn. These are corn's two limiting amino acids. Costa Rica and Mexico have been most successful in introducing soy flour and cereal-soy blends into local diets. In 1974, a sample year, leading recipients of US PL 480 cereal-soy blends were Brazil (12,100 tonnes), Colombia (11,160 tonnes), and Dominican Republic (7,170 tonnes). Latin American as a whole received 57,840 tonnes.

Bolivia. In 1973 Pedro Bleyer, who was using a Brady cooker to produce soy-fortified poultry feed in Bolivia, went to the USA to study corn-soy blends for human nutrition. Visiting Bressani at INCAP in Guatemala, he learned of a food developed there called Maisoy. By early 1976 he had started a private company named Maisoy (called the Nutrinal Co. by 1978) in Santa Cruz and begun to use his Brady produce Maisoy, a blend of 70% corn and 30% soy flour. By mid-1976 Bleyer was delivering Maisoy to the Bolivian Ministry of Public Health, which intended to substitute it gradually for the PL 480 products that had started to diminish. Maisoy was the second LEC product after Thriposha in Sri Lanka to be consumed in public feeding programs. Maisoy was sold as both a flaked product, resembling thick Corn Flakes and a Maisoy flour. By 1977 Bleter was making Sweet Flakes (10% sugar in 340 gm packs) and economy Scholastic Flakes (sweet flakes in 35 gm packs). That year he ran a very expensive publicity campaign on TV and radio and in the newspapers. This was continued but decreased during 1978. Sales skyrocketed at first but then leveled off. In October 1978 Bleyer introduced three new products to reach the low-income market: Delicious Maisoy (a 70:30 corn-soy blend with 10% sugar plus vitamins), Delicious Maisoy with cinnamon and cloves, and Delicious Maisoy with 35% sugar. By 1979 Maisoy had added Natural Flakes (unsweetened 85:15 corn-soy blend) and obtained a 5-year contract with the Ministry of Public Health to supply 90 tonnes of Maisoy a year. It would be distributed by the Mother's Club to infant feeding programs. Production of Maisoy flour increased from 56.6 tonnes in 1976 to 141.4 tonnes in 1978. The product was packaged in plastic bags of 46 kg each. In 1977 52.4 tonnes of soy-fortified Maisoy flakes were produced, decreasing to 19.8 tonnes in 1978 (Bleyer, in Wilson 1976, 1979). The flakes sold for half the price of the popular imported Kellogg's Corn Flakes. Maisoy was one of a handful of attempts worldwide to commercialize cereal-soy blends. Nothing was heard of Bleyer after early 1981 when he was trying to negotiate a new contract with the Bolivian government.??

Brazil. In the 1950s and 1960s Brazil passed a law requiring that 3% soy flour be mixed with wheat flour (Chen 1968 Ref??). In 1975 a law was passed requiring the addition of 3% soy flour to all bread and baked products in order to increase their protein content and to reduce wheat imports by 90,000 tonnes a year. The law, however, was never enforced because the flour millers and bakers refused to comply, probably because it would have required some changes in their formulas and processing methods, and it may have added some extra cost (Harrison 1981). Nevertheless, since at least the mid-1970s soy flour has been the most widely used soyfood in Brazil and consumption is growing. Pereira and de Campos (1981) reported that soy flour was being used in a relatively large number of commercial products including some baked goods, hot and cold beverages, soups, puddings, and biscuits. By 1973 ITAL (Instituto de Technologia de Alimentos) had developed a macaroni flour containing 20% each soy flour and wheat flour, plus 40% corn flour. By 1983 ITAL had developed a bread (7% soy flour), French bread (3%), biscuits (10%), and macaroni (30%). The main concept behind these products was to help reduce huge imports, which helped to make Brazil's import deficit the world's biggest. Soy flour was also being used in USAID-funded foods made by American corporations and sold in Brazil: Golden Elbow Macaroni made by General Foods and Cerealina, a weaning food made by CPC International (Smith and Circle 1978 when?? source??). By 1983 Brazil had not developed an LEC program since the country had an abundance of defatted soy flour, most?? of which was exported to earn foreign currency.

Chile. Starting in 1969 the Technological Research Institute of Chile (INTEC), with the cooperation of USAID, carried out an extensive program of research and development on extruded foods, using a Wenger X-25. In 1971, under the Allende administration, a beverage called Fortesan, made from soy flour and wheat flour, began to be served in school lunches. The formula was developed by Dr. Fernando Monckeberg, who also ran Conin, an organization with 30 child nutrition centers, in which he regularly used soyfoods (Harrison 1981). In 1974 an enriched wheat flour called Superchil was developed. Private companies made 16,000 tonnes of both products in 1975. They were used primarily in government-sponsored programs, distributed free of charge to children aged 2-6 years, although some 1,000 tonnes were retailed commercially (Orr 1977).

Colombia. In 1961 a law was passed in Colombia requiring the addition of 5% soy flour to breads. Wheat millers bought the soy flour as required but did not add it, saying that baking problems connected with its use had not been solved (A.K. Smith 1962a). In the early 1970s Colombia passed another law requiring the addition of 10% soy flour to bread. Again the bakers refused to cooperate (Harrison 1981).

In 1961 Productos Quaker, S.A., a subsidiary of the Quaker Oats Company of the USA, received authorization from INCAP in Guatemala to market the newly developed soy-cereal blend Incaparina in Colombia. Following a full-scale program of consumer research, then successful test marketing, Productos Quaker decided to launch Incaparina 14 on a national scale in 1965. After many difficulties and extensive pioneering work in adapting Incaparina to conditions in Colombia, sales grew to about 2,000 tonnes in 1967 and reached the point of commercial success by 1968 (Shaw 1969) Yet the product never really took off and by 1975 it had been discontinued.

The Colombian Food and Nutrition Plan has used several soy-fortified blended foods, including Bienstarina, of which production reached 5,000 tonnes in 1975. In 1980 two companies made fortified flours containing 20-25% soy flour for this program and about 3,175 tonnes were being distributed under a government subsidized program using coupons which reduced the price by 60% (Crowley 1976; Aguilera and Lusas 1981).

The Instituto de Investigaciones Technologicas in Bogata developed an AID-funded soy-fortified macaroni called Vitalia, containing 17.8% protein.

Costa Rica. During the 1960s a soy-enriched tortilla was introduced to Costa Rica; the soy flour was originally imported from Mexico (Harrison 1981). In the mid-1960s CARE, the American international relief organization, began to distribute Food for Peace (PL 480, Title II) cereal-soy blends, such as CSM, as donations from the US government. By as early as 1977 a Brady low-cost extrusion cooker, provided by CARE-Costa Rica, was being used by CITA (Food Technology Research Center) to produce cereal-soy blends in the PRONUTRE plant in San Jose.

In 1976, as part of the newly-created National Nutrition Program, the Government of Costa Rica, CARE-Costa Rica, and USAID signed a contract to build an LEC plant (with a Brady extruder) near San Jose. Run by CARE, the plant, Productora Costaricense de Alimentos, started operation in June 1979, making 600 kg/hr of Nutrisoy, a soy-cereal blend. By July 1980 the PRONUTRE plant was making, a precooked tortilla. CARE published two recipe books to promote these products. In July 1981 CARE launched Frescorchata, an instant drink powder, which was well accepted. Used for children in school feeding programs, it consisted of LEC-cooked rice and soybeans blended with chocolate and sugar. By mid-1982 the plant was making 60 tonnes a month of Frescorchata, its most popular product. In August 1982 the plant launched Masarina, a soy-fortified corn flour, used in making tortillas and empanadas (def??). Then in May 1983 it introduced Vitaleche, a soy-fortified sweetened milk beverage. All of these products went into the country's National Nutrition Program. (How much was produced??)

The Costa Rica LEC program, which was accompanied by a soybean growing program, has been one of the world's most successful. Details of the total integrated program are given in Chapter 17.

Ecuador. Posters published in Ecuador during the 1940s and World War II by the Ministry of Economics seem to indicate that soy flour (perhaps made by simple home grinding of locally grown soybeans) was used as a protein source in a variety of local foods made from corn or wheat flour (see Chapter 17).

In 1974 Ecuador initiated a supplementary feeding program, but it only became significant after 1977. That year the Ministry of Health, in cooperation with CARE and the World Food Program, began producing Leche Avena, a food supplement containing 70% rolled oats, and 15% each defatted soy flour and nonfat dry milk. It was distributed to 125,000 preschool children, 87,500 school children, and 37,500 pregnant and nursing mothers. The soy flour, donated by the US Food for Peace Program, was distributed by CARE, which imported some 743 tonnes during 1980 (Aguilera and Lusas 1981).

In December 1982 an LEC plant in Quito began production of Soyarroz, a precooked flour made from rice and soybeans (80:20), which was intended to replace Leche Avena. The milled flour was then blended with nonfat dry milk, sugar, vitamins and minerals. Using a Brady extruder, the plant was scheduled to produce up to 1,400 tonnes during 1983 of the Ministry of Health requirements for nutritious foods Ref?? meaning??)

Guatemala. Some of the earliest and most important work in developing high-quality, low-cost foods made from a blend of cereal grains and oilseed flours was done by the Institute of Nutrition of Central America and Panama (INCAP) in Guatemala City. Leaders of this work were Bressani and Torun, who worked in conjunction with Scrimshaw of MIT in the US. In 1954 INCAP began research and development on high-protein human foods and on ways to combat increasingly serious protein deficiencies. This work led to a line of vegetable protein foods generically known as Incaparina. The earliest blends used cottonseed flour mixed with corn or sorghum, but starting in about 1961-62 and increasingly after 1965 INCAP tested soy flour as a supplement in lime-treated corn tortilla mixes (Bressani and Marenco 1963, and in USDA-ARS 1967??). Cottonseeds, though one of the most abundant oil seeds in Central America, had limitations. They contained gossypol, a pigment that is toxic by itself and can also bind protein making it biologically unavailable in foods. Incaparina 14 consisted of 59% corn, 38% toasted soy flour, 3% torula yeast, 1% calcium carbonate, and 4500 IU of vitamin A per 100 gm. The popular Incaparina 15 contained 19% each soy flour and cottonseed flour (Bressani and Elias 1966; Bressani 1966??, 1967). Apparently the soy formulations were never widely commercialized since cottonseed was much more abundant in the area than soybeans at the time.

Incaparina 9 (which used cottonseed instead of soy as the protein source) had been on the market since 1959 but real commercialization started in May 1961, when Guatemala's principal brewer and soft-drink producer, Cerveceria Centroamericano, began distribution. By 1964 the support of public health officials and the medical profession had built a strong demand for Incaparina. By late 1964 sales had reached 100,000 lb (45.45 tonnes) a month, rising to 189 tonnes a month by 1975 (Bressani, in D. Wilson 1976). Consumer surveys conducted by INCAP and by the producer in 1965 showed that an encouraging 45-62% of the country's families were using the product. Containing 27.5% protein, Incaparina cost less than one-third as much per gram of protein as relatively low cost nonfat dry milk. In 1961 Incaparina was introduced to Colombia, and national marketing began in 1965 (Shaw 1969). In 1977 Orr noted that at that time Incaparina and Pronutro (in South Africa) were the only cereal-soy blends with a significant retail trade.

In 1972 INCAP developed a tortilla flour fortified with 8% soy flour and a soy flour supplement enriched with vitamins and minerals that could be purchased by villagers and added at the 8% level to freshly ground corn used to make tortillas. Its acceptance and long term effects were studied in a Guatemalan village of 1700 families. It was found that the optimum to maximize PER was 80 gm of corn and 20 gm of soy flour, in which case the soy contributed 60% of the total protein and the corn 40%. Adding a mere 8% soy flour to a tortilla mix increased the PER from 1.0 to 2.2 (Bressani 1972??).

By about 1973 a Brady extruder, loaned by USDA/AID, was installed at INCAP and much research had been done using it to make cereal-soy blends (Jansen and Harper 1979). According to Judy and Hill (1979) a Guatemala law requires that bread be fortified with soy flour.

Guyana. In March 1977 the Government of Guyana identified the Guyana Pharmaceutical Corporation (GPC), a state agency, as the organization responsible for producing a national weaning food. By July 1979 a demonstration Brady LEC was in operation in Guyana and in February 1980 an LEC food plant producing Cerex, a weaning food, was inaugurated. The plant was funded by a grant from USAID, and the project was a joint venture of the Government of Guyana and AID. Cerex, developed and produced by the Cereal Unit of GPC, was made in a unique way, by extruding a mixture of rice and corn (57%), then blending in 20% defatted soy flour, 10% nonfat dry milk, 8.5% sugar, 2.3% oil, plus vitamins and minerals. It was sold in 227-gm pouches.

By January 1981 4,090 kg of Cerex were being produced daily, and Quality Foods, a GPC subsidiary was running the plant. By mid-1981 Cerex production had grown to 460 tonnes a year, and future plans were calling for greater use of locally grown soybeans and corn as raw materials. A 1981 Cerex Consumer Evaluation Survey showed that the Guyana Weaning Food Project was progressing well, as Cerex had been widely distributed and accepted among all segments of the population: 79% of the children under age 2 had used Cerex (62% of the children 2-5) and over 80% of these consumed Cerex 2-3 times a day (LEC Newsletter, Jan. 1983). By 1983 this entire project was considered very successful; because of the low cost and good quality, supply was unable to keep up with demand.

Mexico. Many have dreamed of the great potential of soy flour to improve the Mexican diet. If only 5% soy flour could be added to the corn flour for every Mexican tortilla, it could eliminate much of the country's protein-calorie malnutrition. Yet this apparently simple goal has remained an elusive one.

The earliest known use of soy flour in Mexico dates from the early 1960s when CONASUPO (the federal government's national food distribution and regulation agency) probably began to produce it in small quantities (Orr 1977). In the late 1960s or early 1970s the Mexican Social Security Institute began to use soy flour and distribute it free of charge. Never very successful, the program was discontinued in the late 1970s. In 1968 the Seventh-day Adventists established Alimentos Colpac in Navojoa, Sonora. The plant soon began to make whole soy flour, which was used as a base for soymilk.

In the early 1970s the National Institute of Nutrition (INN) and the private firm Industrial de Alimentos developed a weaning beverage, Soyacit, which contained 18% each whole (full-fat) soy flour and nonfat dry milk. The government-approved program expected to be making 5 tonnes+ a day by 1972 (Harrison 1972) but by 1975 only 250 kg a day were being made and sold (ASA 1975 Ref??). In 1972 Suberbie and co-workers (Ref??) developed a sweetened infant formula called Sustilac, consisting of whole soy flour fortified with methionine, vitamins, and minerals; it is not known what became of Sustilac. Suberbie (in Baldwin 1981), working with Industrial de Alimentos in Mexico City, reported on the use of soybeans sprouted for 72 hours to give a whole soy flour with improved flavor. US Food for Peace exports of whole soy flour to Mexico were the second largest in the world (after Canada) in the mid-1970s, reaching 32,970 tonnes in 1974, but dropping to 4,627 tonnes in 1975. In 1976 Pontecorvo estimated that only 16,300 kg a day (5,950 tonnes/yr) of soy flour (all full-fat) was being consumed in Mexico.

Harrison (1981) reported that in Mexico 60% of the soy flour used for human consumption was used in bakery products, not for its nutritional value but for its functional properties and to replace more expensive milk and eggs. They found that it gave their baked goods better moisture retention, shelf life, texture, and color, and more even browning. But above all it brought them bigger profits. This was seen as a most promising area for using soy in human diets. Nevertheless, although corn constitutes about 60% of the average Mexican diet, by the early 1980s soy flour was not widely used in corn tortilla mixes. The lowly tortilla, the very backbone of nutrition in Mexico and Central America, is also a sacred cow that must not be tampered. Nutritionists have shown that adding 6% soy flour to the corn will raise the protein content by 30%. Yet this is not being done in Mexico, in part because a large percentage of all tortillas are made at home from home-ground corn flour. Since soy flour is not readily available and most farmers are not familiar with soybean production, it would take a huge education campaign to teach women to start adding soy flour to homemade tortillas.

Perhaps the most successful work with soy flour in Mexico has been done in the state of Chihuahua, in north-central Mexico, by a closely allied group of organizations: CIATECH (Centro de Investigaciones y Assistencia Technologica del Estado de Chihuahua), Fundacion de Estudios Alimentarios y Nutricionales (hereafter referred to as "Fundacion"), and PADSA (Productos Alimenticios Delicias, S.A. de C.V.). CIATECH was founded in January 1977?? as a state research and development center focusing on foods and nutrition. That month it began to investigate commercialization of a low-cost, nutritious soy-based food (Griensen 1979). One of its first projects was to develop a food to help the state's large population of Tarahumara Indians who faced extinction as a result of diseases caused by malnutrition. Many Tarahumara mothers were too poorly nourished to breast feed their own babies and they could not begin to afford commercial infant formulas. Located in Mexico's fourth largest soybean producing state, CIATECH soon became interested in whole soy flour, and its production using a low-cost extrusion cooker (LEC). Visits to PRONUTRE in Alajuela, Costa Rica, and to the LEC R&D facility at Colorado State University in May 1977 deepened their interest (LEC Report 4, 1978). CIATECH did basic research and engineering on the project and private funds were obtained from PADSA, an agricultural cooperative in Delicias, Chihuahua, that was founded in 1977. In March 1978 this LEC plant (located in the city of Delicias, 50 miles south of the state's capital, Chihuahua), having a Brady extruder, and costing US $262,312, was inaugurated by the President of Mexico, Portillo. By July 1979 the company was marketing flour-based soymilk (plain and malted). (Or was this made at ALBACHISA??) The flour was also being sold commercially to bakeries for use as an egg replacer and used as a major ingredient in a frozen ice-cream-like product. Recipes were developed to help consumers use soy flour in local dishes. By late 1980 it was producing 4,000 kg of whole soy flour per 8 hour day and employing 12 people (Griensen 1979, 1981a Jansen and Harper 1979).

Also in March 1978 the basic concept for Soyaven, which later became on of Mexico's best-known soyfoods, originated with Dr. J.R. Govea, a state gastroenterologist in Chihuahua. He was looking for a low-cost infant formula. He interested Dr. H. Villanueva Clift (a pediatrician at Chihuahua State Children's Hospital) and Dr. F.R. Del Valle (a Professor of Food Science at Chihuahua University) in the idea. In May 1978 they, the PADSA production manager, and J. Ponce Aquirre (a food engineer) produced the first pilot batch of Soyaven. Soyaven (from soya + avena = oats) is a powdered infant formula containing 32% whole soy flour (from dehulled soybeans), 26% pearled oat flour, 34% sucrose (white sugar), 6% vegetable oil, plus salt, methionine, vitamins, minerals, and milk flavor. It is the only infant formula ever to use a combination of soy and oats, except for Leche Avena, a food supplement launched in Ecuador in 1977. Clinical trials with Soyavena were conducted on 28 infants from June 1978 to January 1979 with good results. In March 1979 a new extruder was installed at PADSA to give additional production capacity. In May 1979 PADSA and the state agreed to produce Soyaven on a commercial basis and in July commercial production began at PADSA using the LEC. In June 1980 PADSA signed a contract with CONASUPO to distribute and sell Soyaven at its many outlets located throughout Mexico in low-income areas. In these CONASUPER stores, where all foods are sold at subsidized prices to make sure the poor can afford them, Soyaven sold for about half the price of the least expensive milk-based infant formula. Soyaven was also widely sold at supermarkets, drug stores, retail food stores, and clinics for about 67% the price of competing soy-based infant formulas. In October 1980 the many developers of Soyaven (now including Dr. Hector Bourges, nutritionist, and others) formed a new food research and development organization called Fundacion to continue their work on Soyaven and other products. In November 1981 Soyavena was presented the National Bank of Mexico's Science and Technology Award for its value in fighting malnutrition in Mexico. Developers of Soyavena were granted an audience with President Portillo, who ordered that Soyavena be more widely incorporated into the Mexican food system. Details of the product's development, evaluation, and production were given by Del Valle and co-workers (1981). In June 1983 Fundacion, PADSA, and Soyavena won the US Institute of Food Technologists' Industrial Achievement Award and an excellent, lengthy article on the product and its development was published (Mermelstein 1983). At that time 48,000 cans (each 454 gm) of Soyavena were being sold monthly throughout Mexico, most in Mexico City. And a substantial amount was given free of charge to needy nursing mothers in Chihuahua. Fundacion was developing five new products based on soy and oats and PADSA had developed three more products using soy flour; two powdered beverage bases and a soup base.

While work with whole soy flour and Soyavena were progressing at the PADSA plant in the city of Delicias, two other soy flour projects were getting underway in the state of Chihuahua, with key technical assistance from CIATECH. All three plants were within radius of 25-30 miles (40-50 km). In October 1980 a plant was started by Alimentos Basicos of Chihuahua S.A. (ALBACHISA) in what town?? to produce a soy-based drink (like soymilk shakes) made from whole soy flour, sugar, coconut oil, flavor (vanilla, chocolate, strawberry), and color. The drink had the same protein and fat values as milk, with 2.8% protein and 3.0% fat. It helped to fill the milk deficit in the area. By late 1980, the plant (which cost US $173,913) produced 5,000 liters per 8 hours of the drinks and had 10 employees. Also by late 1980 the Albachisa plant was producing 1,500 liters per day of a milk extender, made from powdered milk and whole soy flour. The product, used by DIF-Chihuahua (Family Integral Development Agency), cost 41% less than the regular milk in the market (Griensen 1979, 1981a, LEC Newsletter July 1981).

In December 1979 a third plant was started by ALMESA (Alimentos Mejorados S.A.), after its inauguration by President Portillo. It was located at Cuauhtemoc, in Chihuahua state near the homeland of the Tarahumara Indians. In March 1979 CIATECH had finished building Mexico's first LEC. All the machinery used in the ALMESA plant (including a 75 HP LEC) was made in Chihuahua, a major and significant accomplishment. The entire project took only 6 months to get started, cost US $260,870, had a capacity of 2,630 tonnes a year, and by late 1980 was employing seven people. The basic concept was to fortify with soy flour the two main foods consumed by the local rural and Indian populations: atole (a gruel made with corn and water) and pinole (ground corn), and tortillas, all of which contain only a small amount of low-quality protein. ALMESA's three major products were sunuco (a corn flour for tortillas enriched with 5-8% whole soy flour), pinole con proteinas (ground and roasted corn enriched with soy), and avena con proteinas (precooked, ground oatmeal with soy). After January 1980 the Almesa plant was supplying 27 tonnes a month of the soy-fortified corn flour and 4.5 tonnes a month of the enriched pinole to COPLAMAR (federal office for the attention of marginal groups) and INI (native affairs agency), while soy-fortified oatmeal was increasingly used in the meals at Tarahumara and Jesuit schools (LEC Newsletter July 1980; Griensen 1981a, 1981b). By early 1982 the AlMESA plant was working three shifts a day to make 4,000 liters a day of extended milk, which was sold to lower income groups. Production, expanding with help from state funds, was expected to soon reach 200 tonnes a month (LEC Newsletter Jan. 1982).

The pioneering work by CIATECH, PADSA, Fundacion, the government of Chihuahua, and many others in that state offer a shining lesson in how soy flour and cereal-soy blends can be sold commercially and distributed publicly to provide new, inexpensive, nutritious foods for low-income people. To expand this work, during 1980 CIATECH worked nutrition programs in Costa Rica.

Paraguay. In 1951 Ciancio, in his 505-page book La Soya y el Problema Alimentario del Paraguay, discussed production and use of "whole soy flour" (as he called it). By 1976 pasta products were being fortified with 20% soy flour to conserve the limited wheat production.

Peru. In Peru in 1980 Alvin Siegel and INTSOY were working with a local institute to use soy flour in fortified breads and pasta products, and in a soy beverage. By mid-1982 the M.B. Valencia Milling Company in Arequipa had installed a Brady Model 2160 LEC and was making Ceresoy and Arrosoy, each fortified with 20% whole soy flour. This program showed great promise.

Venezuela. In the mid-1970s pasteurized cow milk in the Venezuelan school lunch program was replaced with a soy-fortified grain-and-milk formula, and Dr. Werner Jaffe was successful in getting arepas (corn griddle cakes) fortified with 8% soy flour introduced to the lunch program (Harrison 1981).

 

HISTORY OF SOY FLOUR, GRITS, AND CEREAL-SOY BLENDS IN AFRICA

Of the world's three major developing regions (Africa, Asia, and Latin America), Africa has been the slowest to realize the potential of soy flour and cereal-soy blends to help solve its increasingly serious nutritional problems. The earliest work started in 1937 in South Africa with the development of a commercial soy flour used in the diet of native mine workers. In 1962 in South Africa the popular ProNutro was introduced. In 1964 African women from various countries visited Iowa State University in the USA to study the use of soy flour in native diets (Soybean Digest, Nov. 1964). In 1974 Africa received 49,944 tonnes of donated PL 480 soy-cereal blends from the USA; 45% of the total was CSM, 31% CSB, and 24% WSB. Major recipient countries that year, in descending order of importance, were the Sahel region (9,000 tonnes), Morocco (6,300), Tunisia (5,800), and Botswana (5,000). That year Egypt was the only major recipient of US whole soy flour (12,000 tonnes). In 1977 Tanzania began work on the continent's first LEC project.

Egypt. In late 1983, as soybean production in Egypt skyrocketed, a very large LEC program was under development. Funding was expected by early 1984.

Ethiopia. In 1969 the Ethiopian Nutrition Institute (ENI) began experiments using defatted soy flour in traditional recipes. Results looked promising. In about 1972 (the ENI?) began to prepare raw, roasted, and pre-blanched soy flour for use in fortifying various traditional foods. In 1975 Hiwot at ENI was adding whole soy flour to traditional foods such as Injera, Wotz and Allichas, Kitta, Dabbo, and Dabokolo. By 1975 ENI was producing 1,500 tonnes a year of Faffa (a soy-fortified weaning food) and 2,600 tonnes of soy-wheat flour, both employed for famine relief: 907 and 2,360 tonnes respectively of the two foods were produced in 1975 (Hiwot 1975; Kopp, in Goodman 1976).

Ghana. In the early 1960s Dr. D.W. Harrison, a black American and self-supporting Seventh-day Adventist medical missionary, made a commercial, soy-fortified whole-wheat bread (see also Chapter 58.12).

Kenya. In mid-1974 the East African Industrial Research Organization (EAIRO) and USAID signed an agreement for the former to evaluate a Brady extruder. By mid-1976 many tests had been done with various cereal-soy blends, using mostly corn and sorghum. EAIRO produced 1,400 kg of CSB weaning food for acceptability trials by the Tanzanian Food and Nutrition Center, then sent the LEC to Pakistan, to the Pakistan Council on Scientific and Industrial Research, which used it to do additional research on extruded foods.

Nigeria. Akinrele (1966) and Oke (1967) first recommended the use of soy flour at the 30% level as a fortifier for ogi, a fermented corn gruel widely consumed in western Nigeria. By late 1983 there was strong interest in starting an LEC program.

Rwanda and Burundi. In 1972 a Belgian priest associated with a professor set up a bakery to make a biscuit fortified with soy flour. Soon 75,000 a day of these nutritious biscuits were being supplied free of cost to dispensaries, schools, hospitals, and missions, with a small proportion being sold at cost.

South Africa. In 1937 Viljoen reported that a well-known milling company had succeeded in producing a soybean meal (soy flour), which was accepted by a number of gold mines on the Rand for use in fortifying mealie meal (a grain porridge), the staple in the diet of native mine workers. This was the earliest known popular and commercial soyfood in Africa and in South Africa.

In 1943, in the midst of World War II, the Union of South Africa Department of Agriculture published a remarkable 58-page bulletin containing 41 soyfoods recipes, including those for soy meal and flour. It noted that the easiest way of introducing soyfoods was by using soy flour to fortify mealie meal.

In 1962 ProNutro was developed by a private South African company without governmental or international backing. The product was marketed on its taste appeal after the health image had been attractively and convincingly advertised. It was promoted to the native population as a separate dietary item, as a breakfast food, or as a flavored soup powder. In 1972 Orr, in a Tropical Products Institute/Protein Advisory Group study, reported that of all such commercial products worldwide, ProNutro had the second largest output, after Bal-Ahar in India (Aguilera and Lusas 1981).

Tanzania. In 1973, as soybean acreage in Tanzania began to expand, tests were run in three villages making whole soy flour using the simple process developed by the USDA Northern Regional Research Center in the USA. By 1974 maize (corn) flour was being fortified with soy flour (3:1) in porridges, and wheat flour was fortified with soy flour (9:1) in breads. However the excessive labor requirements of the hand-operated equipment hampered the project (Mosha 1976).

In 1976 the Tanzanian government decided to establish a weaning food plant at the National Milling Corporation in Dar es Salaam. With assistance from Colorado State University, a low-cost extrusion cooker (LEC) was ordered from the USA, whence it was shipped in January 1977. The plant was expected to produce 700-800 tonnes of corn-soy blend the first year. Acceptability tests on 1,400 kg of a CSB weaning food produced in Kenya were done with good results. The Tanzanian plant finally began production in May 1978, making CSM by extruding a corn-soy mixture and blending in nonfat dry milk, vitamins, and minerals. The blended weaning food was given the name Lisha (a Swahili word meaning "to feed"). It was distributed to infants under 5 years old via Maternal-Child Health (MCH) Centers under the auspices of the Ministry of Health. During 1978 some 572 tonnes were manufactured. Unfortunately the project was plagued with problems. From late 1979 until December 1982 the plant sat idle because of management changes and interagency funding difficulties (LEC Newsletter 1977-83). In January 1979 Tanzania hosted the Second International Workshop on Low-Cost Extrusion Cookers, where much attention was given to cereal-soy blends. At that time the baby food plant, built through the initiative of USAID, was officially opened.

Uganda. According to Dean (1958) during the mid-1950s soy flour was developed on a laboratory scale in Uganda but by 1958 it had not yet reached the pilot plant stage. At that time Multi-Purpose Food, containing soy flour and distributed by the Meals for Millions Foundation of America, was used in hospitals and for infants.

In 1965 Dr. D.W. Harrison, a black American and self-supporting Seventh-day Adventist missionary, started Africa Basic Foods, which did extensive work with producing cereal-soy blends and whole soy flour, then teaching the local people their value. In the early 1970s he used an Insta-Pro extruder. Details of this work are given in Chapter 58.12.

Zimbabwe (formerly Rhodesia). In mid-1983 Willard Foods Ltd., a private company, purchased a Brady low-cost extrusion cooker and planned to make cereal-soy blends.

 

HISTORY OF SOY FLOUR, GRITS, AND CEREAL-SOY BLENDS IN THE MIDDLE EAST

Given the extensive use of flour products in the Middle East (such as pita bread), remarkably little work has been done with soy flour and cereal-soy blends.

In the late 1950s Navot, working as an individual, developed a soy-fortified felafel. By early 1981 Israel had passed a law that commercial bread must contain 6% soy flour. During the late 1960s and 1970s several countries (especially Turkey) received fairly large shipments from the USA of PL 480 soy-cereal blends, especially soy-fortified bulgur (bulgur has been the mainstay of the diet for centuries in Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Turkey, and other Middle Eastern countries) and wheat-soy blend.

 

 

Put here CSB.TW (too wide to print directly)

 

PRODUCTION OF CEREAL-SOY BLENDS IN THIRD WORLD COUNTRIES

 

(Made Mostly With Low-Cost Extrusion Cookers)

(Metric Tons)

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