Anfal has triumphantly fought through a stream of stereotypes and prejudices to achieve her goals. While reading Agricultural Studies at Sultan Qaboos University, Oman, she was often told that her only viable occupation was to become a full-time farmer. “It used to hurt me,” she recounted, “Now I want to prove that studying agriculture makes you a doctor of the environment.”
Rarely seen without a smile – and with the ability to flip negatives into positives – Anfal has overcome life’s challenges with her enduring optimism. The Omani’s secret to her cheerful persona is best summed up using candles: “When they melt, the scent provides a lot of energy. Knowing that a candle must burn to exude light motivates me to work hard. Even if things are difficult, I am certain that this will always shine through – andgive a beautiful scent at the end.”
With her unwavering optimism and drive to succeed, Anfal has nourished a life-long passion for scientific research. Excelling in her academic studies, she is currently working with the National Program for Talent Development in Oman on a top-secret project while competing in Stars of Science.
The homebody shares a strong bond with her large family and knows that they are back in Oman rooting for her every success. She’s been a fan of Stars of Science since just ten years old, watching it after school and telling her parents of her dreams to participate one day when she had a winning concept. Anfal is living proof that great things are right around the corner if you are committed to your work and put in the hours.
About the Project
Dried lemon is a staple ingredient in Omani cooking – but it takes a long time, sometimes up to weeks, to be able to use it in its raw form. What’s more, people often damage their nails and hands when preparing it in traditional meals. With the aid of Anfal’s Dry Lime Auto Extractor, the carpel section of dry lime fruit is efficiently removed while adhering to international food standards. This makes harvesting this popular ingredient much easier.
The idea struck after a university professor encouraged Anfal to step away from mechanical and chemical engineering and explore the field of food processing. Roaming her kitchen for ideas, she stumbled upon dry lemons – and so her idea was born.
Anfal’s creation is a unique and novel concept in the food industry. Several products already deal with nuts, fruit, and vegetables – but having a machine that works solely on dried fruits is an industry first.
The optimist envisions a multitude of applications for her project, ranging from hospitality and household to use in the medical sector. It could also prove to be a real benefit to the local Omani economy: “I see this as a real jump in Omani food processing. Being able to extract the carpel will make this ingredient easier to export as a final, ready-to-use product that follows international standards.”