Local products can be more competitive if they have distinctive taste and images that will help push them toward their target market.
“Coffee and cacao are investment potentials of Antique, but we lack branding strategy so much so that in a very competitive market we could not yet say that this is an ‘Antiqueno coffee,” said Director Mercedes Young of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Antique office.
Director Young said during the PIA Radio program that as part of DTI’s support to the development of coffee and cacao industry in the province, “we will help them strengthen their competitiveness by improving the branding of their products in order to attract more markets”.
According to her, the province has 1,129 farmers/growers of coffee with the Municipality of San Remigio cited to have wider areas compared to the Municipalities of Sibalom, Culasi, and Hamtic, and some municipalities with only small plantations identified in Lauaan, Bugasong, Patnongon, Valderrama, and Tibiao.
Per DTI’s 2014 survey, around 775 hectares in the province are planted to coffee.
“The DTI invited topnotch industry leaders/practitioners as resource persons during a two-day Provincial Coffee and Cacao Investment fora aimed to encourage farmers and potential investors to engage in this particular high value crops,” said the DTI Antique Director.
The resource persons with their topics include the Chief Executive Officer Alvira Reyes of the Philippine Coffee Alliance who discussed the status of the industry and investment opportunities for coffee; Executive Director Valente Turtur of Cacao Industry development Association of Mindanao, Inc. for the topic on the status of the industry and investment opportunities for cacao; What’s next for coffee by Lorena C. Navallasca, chairperson of Antique Coffee Council; What’s next for cacao- Chairperson Ramon Iwag of Antique Cacao Council, and Jumelinda Juanillo, vice-chair of Antique Cacao Council; Agripreneurship by Ms. Nadine Adellia Ledesma, associate professor of De La Salle Araneta University; and financing forum conducted by the representatives from the Land Bank of the Philippines, Development Bank of the Philippines, and Small Business Corporation. (JSC/VWV/PIA6 Antique)