AFTER six years, the World Food Expo (Wofex) came back to Cagayan de Oro City for a three-day trade show at the Limketkai Atrium from March 13 to 15 with the goal of helping improve tourism and the food industry of the city.
Wofex, the biggest and most effective trade show for the food service industry, is a trade show which caters to both the buyers and the sellers.
"Although it’s a food show, baka akala ng tao na its (poeple might think it’s) really just a food for consumption. When you're talking about food, it’s the whole industry, the ingredients, equipment, packaging, and the food product, even the franchising, exporting, and importing," Peptarsus Corporation President and event organizer Joel Pascual said.
Pascual said Cagayan de Oro was chosen as one of the cities for the food expo due to its progressive tourism and food industry.
"We normally choose cities that are normally progressive, yung madaming development na nangyayari (with several developments occurring). Because when there are a lot of hotels, a lot of tourism happening, normally food service follows, maraming (several) restaurants, kahit (even) karinderia, whatever, food pa rin yan (that is still food). Given that, that is what Wofex is for, to help the food establishments to improve their operations," Pascual said.
According to Pascual, about 100 exhibitors have displayed their food products, equipment and services.
As an organization that helps in saving and improving the tourism industry, the Peptarsus Corporation president said they also plan to conduct the trade show in the cities of Zamboanga and General Santos.
"I sort of want to help Zamboanga kasi medyo (because) they don't have a very good reputation. And so if we are bringing a trade show like this there, nale-legitimize kasi na open sila (it will be legitimized that they are open) for business. So we will probably do Zamboanga and Gensan," Pascual said.
He added that they also saw how Cagayan de Oro was affected by what happened in Marawi last year.
"We hope that we also have impacted the impression that yes, Cagayan de Oro is open for business, everything is normal, that people can work with you, can visit, na tapos na yung Marawi problem (that the Marawi crisis is over)," Pascual said.
The Wofex organizer encouraged those who are into food business to come to know Wofex as they can "help you make your establishment better," while he also urge those who are thinking of putting up a business to enter the food industry.