HIGHLIGHTING the products of Davao Region’s cacao industry and its importance is the main subject of the second edition of Mindanao Artisan Chocolate Fair, which commenced in SM Lanang Premier and SM City Davao.

The event is an island-wide celebration of the cacao industry in the region, with chocolate producers and cacao growers, chocolatiers and entrepreneurs from across the southern Philippine island showcasing their products in what is now called the Cacao Mindanao Chocolate Fair.

“Through this event, we celebrate Mindanao’s rich cacao and chocolate industries and we are honored to have been joined by the finest chocolatiers and cacao producers from the region as we celebrate the 2nd Mindanao Cacao Artisan Chocolate Fair,” SM Supermalls said in a press release.

The event is in partnership with SM Supermalls, City Government of Davao, Department of Agriculture, and the Philippine Cacao Board, with 10 carts and stores participating including local cacao stores.

Julius Macarine, Maragusan Multi-Purpose Cooperative processing in-charge, said the cacao industry has been catching up with the rise of its demand.

Their cooperative had also adapted with the time by using innovative technologies to multiply their production.

“Nagagamit pod mi og organic na fertilizer ka para mas mag-less ang iyang inputs ug mopataas ang output sa cacao,” Macarine said.

Last May 2021, the Republic Act 11547 was signed declaring Davao Region as the Cacao Capital of the Philippines while Davao City as the Chocolate Capital.

Davao Region is the biggest cacao producer in the country, accounting for about three-fourths of the total output per year, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) data.

“Davao Region produced 1.80 thousand metric tons or 76.7 percent share to the country’s total cacao production during the [2023 first] quarter. The remaining 23.3 percent was the combined output of the other fifteen regions,” PSA said.

The chocolate exhibit will be open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., and will run until Sunday, March 5.