The production of honey in Panama, the different types of cocoa and he process of fermentation and stages to brew beer, were the main topics discussed by Panamanian scientists, on the occasion of science week that begins on October 18, its promoters reported today.
The National Secretariat of Science, Technology and Innovation (Senacyt) reported that to bring science to the public in a simple way, it made several activities and experiments on how certain food products are produced this weekend.
In the exhibition "Sorpréndete con la ciencia", the cultivation of cocoa, varieties of the grain, the production of chocolate and the current situation of the cacao plantations in the province of Bocas del Toro (West), was talked about.
As for the production of artisanal chocolate, the producer of cocoa, Orlando Lozada, explained that after collecting the ripe cocoa fruit, they open to extract the grains, and these are taken to the fermentation process, which takes from 5 to 6 days. They are then dried in the sun and then toasted, which can take 20 to 40 minutes, depending on the intensity of the fire. Afterwards, the husks are removed from the grains and taken to the mill.
Then the cocoa is presented as a dough, which is placed in molds, to take it to the presentation of a chocolate bar for consumption, this is processed in a refining machine, where the grains and masses are crushed, until the lumps are removed so it becomes viscous and pleasant to the palate of the consumer, indicated Lozada.
Specialist Hermógenes Fernández, of the Institute of Scientific Research and High Technology Services (Indicasat), spoke about bees, their problems, and how to improve honey production and encourage greater consumption in the population.
He explained that the consumption of this product among Panamanians is two ounces per year and that more must be encouraged to benefit from their properties.
Fernandez also pointed out that African bees are much more resistant than European bees to diseases caused by mites of the genus Varroa, but they are also more aggressive, which is why beekeepers must wear protective equipment to work with them.
To culminate, the II edition of "Hasta la cerveza tiene su ciencia", members of the Home Brewers Association of Panama and the Technological University of Panama (UTP), explained the fermentation process and its stages, what the flavor of the beer and its colors are attributed to and presentations, among other curiosities of this popular drink.
Senacyt reported that from October 19 to 21 the Latin American Youth Science and Technology Fair will be open to the public at a local hotel and that the next "Sorpréndete con la ciencia" will be held on October 20, 21, 27 and 28 of 2018 at the Albrook Mall in Panama City.