March 11, 2021
We began the week by visiting our new partners at Chuniding Food, to learn about their efforts to create innovative food products using fruits and vegetables produced by our local farmers throughout the country. Our team met with Aum Kesang, the founder, who gave us a tour around the vicinity, explaining the work done in each of the different units. We learned there that, while a small enterprise, Chuniding incorporates all principles of the Royal Government of Bhutan’s policy to substitute import, increase export, use local products and generate employment.
As we walked around each of the units, we saw small groups of women, sorting out unhusked buckwheat and millet, while some peeled fresh green broccoli that had just arrived from Tsirang. Once prepped, the cut broccoli will go inside the dehydrator machine for 10-14 hours after which they can be powdered to make vegetable soup or preserved for later use. Similarly, many high nutrient food products such as gluten-free flour, dehydrated vegetables, fruit snacks, and rice substitutes will be created to be supplied to schools and hospitals.
Established in 2015 as a social enterprise with its mission to preserve and promote the Bhutanese food culture, Chuniding Food one of the well-established and known processors of fruits and vegetables in Bhutan. The Bhutan Foundation is supporting Chuniding to scale up their production facility in order to support local farmers and prevent surplus produce from going to waste.