The largest and most populous city in Metro Manila, Quezon City, joins IFEX Philippines, the country’s celebrated food trade show organized by the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM), the export promotions arm of the Philippine Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).
Quezon City is one of the participants of IFEX Philippines’ Partner City Program, a trading platform that aims to assist small and medium food producers and manufacturers that will place them at par with major key players in the local and international food trade industry.
“We, at Quezon City, are preparing our micro- and small entrepreneurs to be more competitive given the coming ASEAN integration. We want to make sure that they level up in their standard of performance as entrepreneurs because we have to be competitive participants in the global economy,” said Quezon City Vice Mayor Ma. Josefina Belmonte.
The local government of Quezon City, local food entrepreneurs, and CITEM gathered in a two-session briefing, where food consultants Ms. Rose Kwan (for Food Safety and Export Compliances), Ms. Luz Lizada (for Food Technology and Food Safety), and Engr. Abner Villahermosa (for Business Development and Branding), crafted a comprehensive and specialized product development program for each participant after an initial evaluation of the readiness of the entrepreneurs’ products for IFEX Philippines 2015. Factory visits and intervention activities such as class sessions on Philippine Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requirements, prerequisite programs in food hygiene, and mentoring activities on product and site evaluation, product and process compliances, and packaging development were likewise performed to provide appropriate recommendations to participating companies.
“There is a steadily increasing demand for locally produced specialty dishes and heritage food items in the market today, and trade buyers should take advantage of the business partnership and opportunities offered by our Partner Cities’ small and medium food entrepreneurs,” said CITEM Executive Director Rosvi C. Gaetos.
For the upcoming IFEX Philippines 2015, Quezon City food entrepreneurs will offer a wide selection of food products and beverages such as processed fruits and vegetables (pickled mangoes, malunggay dressing, pickled papaya, premium nutri-noodles, cucumber cocktail, cucumber prunes, soya milk, chilled taho); processed meat and marine products (gourmet dried fish, native longganisa, bacon, and sausages); breads and pastries (pan de suelo, brazo de coco, and lenggua with varied flavors); and sauces and condiments (sautéed shrimp paste, wild honey, and chili garlic sauce).
“Our goal in this IFEX Philippines participation is to raise awareness about Quezon City as a culinary destination. Part of our general tourism thrust is to identify various aspects in our city that we considerably find interesting, and one of these is our culinary culture,” stated Belmonte, adding that IFEX Philippines is one way for them to introduce their food offerings to the general public and to the foreign market.
Small and medium food enterprises (SMEs), representing an essential source of economic growth, dynamic and flexibility in emergent economies and in development, significantly contribute to the general health and welfare of the economy: they provide employment opportunities, promote competitiveness, and bring new products to the market and most importantly, they are the biggest contributors to the gross domestic product.
Trade visitors and buyers are invited to see and experience Quezon City’s rich and varied food products together with the products of three other partner cities Dagupan, Pasig, and Taguig City at IFEX Philippines 2015, the biggest and most respected showcase of ethnic and specialty food in Asia.
IFEX Philippines is a global platform for highly profitable and enduring business partnerships. With more than 800 food exporters from the Philippines and the world, and more than 13,000 global buyers and visitors, IFEX Philippines brings together the leading export-oriented food and ingredient companies of Asia, the Pacific, Americas, and the rest of the world. It offers a wide variety of flavors, food products, innovations, and services, for buyers from all parts of the globe.
IFEX Philippines is slated on May 21-24, 2015, at the SMX Convention Center, Manila, Philippines.
For more information about IFEX Philippines 2015, please visit http://www.ifexphilippines.com.