Nutrient content and acceptability of soybean based complementary food

  • H Martin
  • H Laswai
  • K Kulwa
Keywords: Cowpeas, banana, formulations, composition, processing


Cereal gruels, starchy roots and tubers continue to form the bulk of staple foods in the world. Though commercial foods of high quality are available, they are unaffordable by much of the world’s population. There is need to develop a different approach to offer families the opportunity to feed their infants improved formulations with traditional staples. A study was carried out in Morogoro region, Tanzania, to determine composition and acceptability of soy-based formulations with banana and cowpeas as traditional staples. Bananas, soybean and cowpeas were prepared and used to make composite flour. Soybean were roasted and milled. Fourteen composite flour formulations were prepared by combining the raw materials in different ratios. Chemical analyses of individual formulations were made to determine their proximate
compositions. The ranges of the nutrients in the formulations were: 9.58 to 22.23% (crude protein), 0.14 to 4.56% (fibre), 1.15 to 5.51% (fat) and 67.61 to 81.91% (carbohydrate). Blending banana with cowpea alone, addition of 10 to 20% cowpeas in the formulations improved the protein from 9.58 to 13.74%, respectively, but was
still lower than the level recommended by Tanzania Bureau of Standards (TBS) and CODEX Alimentarius. Introduction of 10% soybean instead of cowpeas resulted in improvement of the protein to 17.87%, which was above the recommended level, indicating its superiority as a protein source. Such a level of protein in the formulation was quite encouraging even if there were variations in protein content of soybeans
used in the formulations. There were significant differences (p<0.05) among formulations for appearance, smell, flavour and general acceptability. Consistency of all formulations compared favourably. Complementary foods of good nutritive value can be locally made by using available food ingredients that complement each other in such a way that they meet the nutritional requirement of children. For banana
consuming communities, increased consumption of soybean could improve the nutritional status of their children.

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1684-5374
print ISSN: 1684-5358