In food processing industry, salt is used as a condiment seasoning, preservative, flavoring and refrigerant. In manufacturing, it is an active ingredient in detergents, metallurgical, refining, filtering and water treatment processes. Feedmills and livestock growers require salt to keep their animals healthy. Processed food manufacturers employ salt as an iodine carrier. Health care providers include it as an ingredient in oral dehydration and dextrose formulas. With so many applications, salt is an indispensable part of the country’s industries and a ready supply is needed to keep with the strong demand for it. Fortunately, salt occurs naturally in seawater. It is harvested from the sea through evaporation and the mining of salt deposits.
In the Philippines, a total of 5,080 hectares are committed to producing salt through solar evaporation. There are several grades of salt produced by varying the methods of evaporation. Traditional salt farms use ceramic-tiled to produce commercial salt having about 85% NaCl content. About 80 percent of the area used in producing salt utilizes this method. Another method of producing salt involves a technique known as fractional crystallization, which allows the salt farm to produce industrial salt with at least 92% NaCl content. Pure dried vacuum salt has 99.9% purity and is free flowing. However, it is imported into the country because no facility exists to produce this kind of salt.