One-stop shop for spicy pasalubongs

IN THE past year, we saw more and more entrepreneurs tapping into the market potentials of chili-based products. There are a variety of chili-based products out there that we have grown to love.

A group of micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) have formed a group that seeks to market their innovative products -- both chili-based and non-chili products.

Dabawenyo Capsicum was formed Davao City-based chili enthusiasts and food processors to serve as their marketing arm. Members of the group includes Arkadyo Pepper Sauce, Pastil Queen, Kimchinoy, Test Kitchen, Pedas Gila, G.K.T., ABJ Herbs, Codiments, Spices, and Chilloy's Gourmet Condiments and Sauces.

In March 2019, the group opened their first store at the Doña Segunda Complex showcasing their different products.

Mary Grace Sebanes, Dabawenyo Capsicum operations manager and Chilloy's Gourmet founder, said they saw the need to open a store because after joining trade fairs some customers where they could go after the fairs.

Since most of them sell their products online, meet-ups could be a hassle and some clients would be hesitant to pay for delivery charges.

"It (the store) helped a lot considering yung marketing namin naging isa nalang (We were able to market our products as one)... There is also a place where people can go to buy our products," Sebanes said.

By having a one-stop shop for their product, Sebanes pointed out that their products are becoming known. The shop also allows them to promote Davao City through their products.

She said they also made sure the store will look nice to allow visitors to take instagrammable photos.

The store offers visitors a range of products from the members like Kagikit in a jar, hot sauces, chili garlic oil, kimchi, sambal, brad spreads, powdered chili, gourmet tuyo, vinegar, sinamak, and even tuna chicharon. The store has a free taste section that will allow customers to try the products they have to offer.

Sebanes said all the products of the members are free from preservatives. They also mainly source their raw products from local farmers.

She said customers can expect some new products every now and then as the members continue to develop something new.

"We are slowly innovating and developing more products that would suit the needs of customers, especially those outside Davao City to encourage them to come over and visit us," Sebanes said.

She added that the Department of Trade and Industry continues to assist them through the Negosyo Center.

"We attend their sponsored seminars and trainings. Through this we are able to see which part of the product we have to develop and innovate on," Sebanes said.

As part of their long-term vision, Sebanes said they hope to bring Davao-made products to the world stage.

"Our vision is to be known globally. A group that caters to unique brands that not only creates and develops delicious and tasty products but also that helps the environment, local brands, and farmers," Sebanes said.


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