Celebrating Cebu’s roots: A week of local food, music at The Terraces

Celebrating Cebu’s roots: A week of local food, music at The Terraces
Celebrating Cebu’s roots: A week of local food, music at The Terraces

Daniele Araula-Fuentes, Silliman University Intern / Writer

“LOCAL LOVE,” Ayala Center Cebu’s campaign that aims to showcase the city’s gastronomic tourism and homegrown music, officially launched its week-long event on June 5, 2024, at The Terraces in Ayala Center Cebu.

This campaign is in partnership with the Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI) One Town, One Product (OTOP) program. The campaign serves as a platform for small and medium enterprises to showcase their products and creativity to Cebuanos and the city’s tourists.

“Local Love” was conceptualized by Ayala Center Cebu in 2014. It started with pocket activities to celebrate Philippine Independence Day on June 12, gradually changing into a theme-based campaign per year, this year’s theme being food and music.

Janra Montilla, senior marketing manager of Ayala Malls, said that “Local Love” is about “going back to our roots.” The campaign serves as a platform for Cebuanos to familiarize themselves with their local cuisines and delicacies again, especially given the abrupt rise of foreign culinary influences.

“We want to be a platform for the local food scene. So we really put effort into bringing in Siomai sa Tisa, chorizo, ginabot readily available in Ayala Center Cebu,” said Montilla.

Montilla also said that the campaign is an excellent opportunity for the Micro, Small and Medium-scale enterprises (MSMEs) to be given an avenue to showcase their products.

Sonnet Torrefiel, the artisan behind the sumptuous homemade chorizo, experienced having a physical booth for the first time.

“At the very least, I get exposure for my products. It’s good marketing. Why not give it a try?” said Torrefiel.

Pennwela Campomanes, owner of Vhonytiff Fruit Food Products Processing, which specializes in Cebu’s famous delicacies such as banana chips, dried mangoes and choco chips, says she always accepts DTI’s invitations to events like “Local Love.”

“The exposure is really great,” said Campomanes. She emphasized the impact of choosing local products: “I’ve always taught my children to buy local products because, look at the farmers and our community; we can help provide employment. So as much as possible, we should support local products.”

“Local Love” runs until June 12. The campaign also includes a variety of activities, such as “Sugboanong Pasalubong,” in partnership with DTI, which offers an avenue for bringing home local flavors from different towns of Cebu. Another activity, “Duyog ug Bahandi,” aims to amplify and celebrate the local music scene. On June 8, “Pusong Cebuano” provides an opportunity to learn how to weave and wrap hanging rice (puso). Proudly Bisaya offers a delicious journey through the heart and soul of Cebuano cuisine on June 12.

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