Tourism, Agriculture departments to hold agri-tourism confab-A A +A
Friday, October 26, 2012
THE Departments of Tourism (DOT) and Agriculture (DA) continue to strengthen their role in nation building, this time for the first national agri–tourism and barangay food terminal (BFT) congress slated October 25–27 at Hotel Supreme.
The event will be participated by stakeholders, BFT operators and members, and partner agencies from the different regions. The highlight of the activity is a trade fair, which will exhibit various native and tourism products of each region.
DA–Cordillera representative Marilyn Cosalan said the event will showcase indigenous products with other regions coming up to Baguio City to participate.
The event is a three-day activity that covers a one-day immersion to the different identified areas in Benguet with successful BFTs, namely: Kapangan, Tublay, Bokod, Atok, and Buguias. These municipalities also have areas that are ready for agri–tourism activities.
One day was also allotted for the presentation and discussion on the potential contributions of the agri and tourism industries to the economy of the country.
The congress aims to provide a venue to bridge issues and concerns in the development of agri–tourism industry; to strengthen partnership between stakeholders, cooperatives, organizations and the government; and to reinforce the BFTs as pasalubong centers.
Furthermore, the congress provides a venue to empower cooperation among government and private sectors in sharing and developing an insight strategies and new schemes for economic growth through enhancing tourism activities anchored to the existing BFTs, which highlight the agricultural products native to the place while promoting the preservation of the country’s cultures.
During the recent 1st Agriculture and Tourism expo, Senator Lito Lapid cited, “The Philippine tourism development has indeed, taken a major leap forward by incorporating agricultural activities into its holistic programs that encourage active involvement and participation of the people and their communities. In this age of global competitiveness, agri – tourism has become a form of niche tourism that is considered a growth industry in many parts of the world, including the Philippines. The essence of agri–tourism is to encourage various tourists to experience actual agricultural activities while appreciating the value of farmers’ produce.”
“Notable agri–tourism activities in the country which highlight high – value commercial crops include Baguio’s Panagbenga, La Trinidad Strawberry Festival, and the Benguet’s Adivay Festival among others. It is the biggest industry that has boomed nationally and internationally,” he added.
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on October 26, 2012.