TARGETING top tourist markets in the region to introduce homegrown comfort food, Tabléa Chocolate launched its first kiosk concept, Tabléa Chocolate Express on May 3, Friday.
Armi Lopez-Garcia, chief executive officer of Tabléa Chocolate, said the kiosk will be open for franchising by next year to spread the brand’s bestsellers to a bigger market.
“We want to develop entrepreneurship, so this is one way of presenting another option for businesses. And at the same time, they know that this brand can also be a marketing avenue for farmers,” Garcia said.
Garcia said they are also looking at collaborating with tour agencies to tap top tourism markets in Central Visayas like the Koreans and Chinese to boost the popularity of local products, which will in turn generate income for cacao farmers.
“We have product lines that are tourism-oriented. In fact, in the chocolate bars, I plan to feature and showcase the bars with the tourist destinations in Cebu, and we already have that in our packaging,” she said.
Garcia expects higher sales to greatly help cacao farmers and encourage them to continue growing cacao beans.
“The more sales I have, the more I will buy from the farmers, and they can run to us to sell their tablea,” she said.
With the help of the Department of Agriculture (DA) and other groups, cacao farming is expected to thrive, especially because it can be inter-cropped with other fruit-bearing plants, and its global market value is slowly going up, she added.
“There is a shortage of cacao in the world market, so the government realized that our country is really suitable for cacao farming,” Garcia said.
Under the express brand, Filipino specialties like puto maya with sikwate and champorado are served to customers who are on the go.
“This is to meet the demand of the busy generation now who are always on the go. So we have to come up with a product that’s also on the go, but at the same time, their comfort food,” she said.
The new kiosk is located on the ground floor of Parkmall in Mandaue City. (JOB)