Douwe van der Zee is a third year student Food Technology at VHL University of Applied Sciences in Leeuwarden, with the specialisations Food Technology and Process Engineering. In the third year he was president of a project team concerned with the improvement of banana chips.

Product improvement

‘From different subjects our group chose the assignment to improve banana chips. The assignment came from an external party, mister Zalmijn. He wanted an improved, uniform product. The present banana chips are varied in shape, thickness and structure. We investigated several possible solutions for this and came up with a better product in the end.’

Cracking and taste

After making and testing of different types of dough, we got the best result by using corn flakes. In the development process we took structure, thickness, cracking and taste of the banana chips into account. It was a process of trial and error. We chose the name Banchi-chips, which we thought fitted well with the product. I was president of the project group, which meant amongst other things that I had to make sure everybody was on the same wavelength.’

Very interesting

‘For me the combination of food and technology is very interesting. Everybody needs food, it is one of the necessities of life. It is a challenge to be able to contribute to this. The programme Food Technology is very broad and you learn a lot here, so I really like it very much!’

Many jobs

‘It makes me feel at ease that there are a lot of jobs in the field of food technology. It is a broad work field, so you can choose many ways to go after your study; from quality to technique and from factories to audit. I am mostly interested in the technical side of food and I would like to work as a process technologist after my graduation, preferably in the dairy sector.’

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