Crackers/kemplang are well known by the public as snacks or complementary foods. Making various crackers/kemplang does not require special skills so it can be done as a home industry. Jejawi District, OKI Regency, as one of the cracker/kemplang production centers, has a village where some of the people are small entrepreneurs making crackers/kemplang. In producing there are various obstacles or problems that must be faced. The problems that often arise in order to meet the demand for crackers/kemplang include, among other things, inadequate production capacity. In addition to the problem of low production capacity, the production of crackers in micro-enterprises is still carried out conventionally which causes problems with the production of unhygienic crackers/kemplang. Among other things, the low production capacity is due to the fact that the crackers/kemplang still rely on sunlight for drying, so it takes a long time to dry the crackers/kemplang. Even if it rains for several days, the drying of the crackers can fail and the moist crackers/kemplang will grow mold. Based on these problems, it is necessary to design a cracker/kemplang drying system with appropriate technology intended for the home industry.
In order to provide solutions and provide motivation for small cracker/kemplang entrepreneurs, the Chemical Engineering Study Program, Faculty of Engineering, PGRI Palembang University, was led by team leader Muhrinsyah Fatimura, S.T., M.T with members: 1. Dr. Ir. Muhammad Bakrie, M.T., 2, Aan Sefentry, S.T., M.T., 3. Rully Masriatini, S.T., M.T., 4. Ir. Agus Wahyudi, M.M., 5. Reno Fitrianti, S.T., M.Sc., 6. Nurlela, S.T., M.T., 7. Husnah, S.T., M.T., 8. Dr. Ian Kurniawan, S.T., M.Eng., IPM., 9. Dr. Nabila, S.T with the theme “Introduction to Greenhouse Crackers/Kemplang Drying Equipment for Small Entrepreneurs” on Wednesday (7/12/2022) carried out Community Service (PPM) in Jejawi District, OKI Regency. Also present were the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering Amiwarti, S.T., M.T., Head of LPPKM UPGRIP Dr. Rohana, M.Pd., CIQnR and staff, Jejawi District Head Jemmy, S.Pd., M.Sc and ranks and representatives of the Community Activity Unit (UKM) for Jejawi Village, Gugusan Village and Air Itam Village, Jejawi District, OKI Regency.
In his remarks, Jejawi Sub-District Head Jemmy, S.Pd., M.Si said, “Welcome to Palembang PGRI University, with Community Service activities by the Chemical Engineering Study Program, the Faculty of Engineering UPGRIP can grow and develop natural resources in Jejawi sub-district, it is hoped that Such activities can continue. With superior products, one of which is crackers/kemplang, this is an opportunity for the community to gain additional knowledge from expert explanations from Palembang PGRI University. And hopefully the economy of the Jejawi people will be more prosperous and can create new jobs,” said Jemmy, S.Pd., M.Sc.
This is in line with what was said by Amiwarti, S.T., M.T, “On this occasion, we from the Chemical Engineering Study Program, Faculty of Engineering, UPGRIP, will provide a little knowledge to the community. Hopefully what is given can provide benefits and can add motivation and solutions in the production of efficient, quality and hygienic crackers/kemplang.”
Then the event continued with a brief overview of Palembang PGRI University which was delivered by Aan Sefentry, S.T., M.T. After that, it was followed by an introduction to the drying equipment which was conveyed by Dr. Ir. Muhammad Bakrie, M.T. After listening to the explanation given about the form and method of use as well as the benefits of greenhouses as a drying tool for crackers/kemplang, the event continued with a question and answer session and on this occasion the Chemical Engineering Study Program lecturer demonstrated the procedures for using the dryer. It is hoped that this activity will provide a solution and assist the community in dealing with problems in drying crackers/kemplang. Then the event ended with a group photo with the community and village officials and the presentation of souvenirs.
Apart from being filled with PPM activities, in this activity an agreement was made and the signing of a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) between the Chemistry Study Program, Faculty of Engineering, PGRI Palembang University and Jejawi Sub-District Head, OKI Regency. This memorandum of understanding was signed by Muhrinsyah Fatimura, S.T., M.T as Chair of the Chemical Engineering Study Program and Jemmy, S.Pd., M.Sc as Head of Jejawi District, OKI Regency. With this collaboration, it is hoped that in the future both parties can increase cooperation in the implementation of education, research, community service, development and improvement of human resources both for the community and for institutions.