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Design, Fabrication and Evaluation of a Direct-Fired Corncob Furnace for Corn Drying

Jessie Pascual P. Bitog1, Jessie C. Elauria2, Arnold R. Elepano2 and Arsenio N. Resurreccion3


The sandfish (Holothuria scabra) is processed and dried into a high-value product known as trepang that is used as a food ingredient, primarily for markets in Hong Kong and beyond. Due to high demand, populations in the wild are over-exploited from indiscriminate harvesting and undersized trepang in the Philippines is common. Mass balance analysis of sandfish samples from Coron (Palawan province) and Bolinao (Pangasinan province) was conducted to demonstrate the benefits of observing size limits during harvesting. Individual weights of sandfish from Coron and Bolinao had ranges of 557 – 1,237 g and 89 – 590 g, respectively. Based on degutted weight of each animal, the product recovery was significantly greater for larger animals (8.8%) compared to smaller animals (6.2%). For the same number of specimens, the estimated total value for Coron and Bolinao samples was PhP3,351.73 and PhP431.95, respectively. The higher value of Coron samples was due to the larger saleable weight, higher product recovery, and premium prices paid for large and well-dried trepang. On a per-kg basis, the value of Coron samples (PhP4,269.72 kg-1) was 1.8 times higher compared to Bolinao samples (PhP2,385.15 kg-1). A field trial of prototype equipment for mechanized processing and drying of sandfish in Pagbilao (Quezon province) showed that it was possible to produce well-cleaned and well-dried trepang from large sandfish that compared well with competing products in Hong Kong markets.

Keywords: Sandfish, mass balance, sea cucumber, processing, drying

1Instructor, College of Engineering, Nueva Vizcaya State University, Nueva Vizcaya, Philippines; 2Associate Professor, and 3Professor, College of Engineering & Agro-Industrial Technology, University of the Philippines Los Baños, Philippines.


Pardua, S.N., Lapitan, E.L.O., Deanon, J., Duque, J.A.C., Pangan, R.S., and Yaptenco, K.F. (2018). Product Recovery After Processing and Drying of Philippine Sandfish (Holothuria scabra) into Trepang. Philippine Journal of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering, 14, 31-44.