PRODUCERS from different local government units (LGUs) in Negros Occidental are getting a boost through the recently-opened Negros First Pasalubong Center at the ground floor of Ayala North Point’s The District mall in Talisay City.
Gerard Tupas, project development officer III of Technology and Livelihood Development Center (TLDC), said the provincial government has initially linked to the center about 30 producers, who are members of the Association of Micro Entrepreneurs of Negros (Amen).
Tupas said the Negros First Pasalubong Center showcases truly Negros products, mostly food like wine, chips, and other delicacies of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the province.
“This is like an investment of the provincial government to help local entrepreneurs further promote their products to bigger markets,” Tupas said.
The mall management has offered the provincial government the space for the “pasalubong” center especially for tourists and visitors, he added.
Tupas said the province will pay a monthly rental fee, which will be sourced from its 20 percent income-share from the total sales of the participating-LGUs.
The initial batch of producers currently displaying their products is from Himamaylan City, Talisay City, San Carlos City, and Murcia.
Tupas said the TLDC will also tap all other cities and municipalities through their respective local chief executives to bring their products at the center to further help in the promotion of one town, one product (Otop) program.
Other local food producer organizations like the Association of Negros Occidental Food Processors (ANOFP) are also urged to participate.
Aside from helping local entrepreneurs improve their product competitiveness through quality labeling, and packaging development trainings, the TLDC is also assisting MSMEs in terms of marketing by connecting them to potential buyers through various trade fairs and exhibitions, Tupas said.
He added that TLDC is also looking at establishing more province-run “pasalubong” centers through the help of other big establishments, mainly malls, to cover more local producers.
“Helping MSMEs improve their competitiveness enables them to contribute to economic and social development as well as in the poverty reduction efforts of the province,” he added.