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First-ever Guimaras Dragon Fruit Fest to kick off Sept. 29

Aside from its Manggahan Festival, the island province of Guimaras is offering another fresh experience to locals and visitors through a two-day event which will kick off on Thursday, September 29.

Dubbed as “Dragon Fruit Festival: A Fresh Experience,” the event was organized for the National Tourism Month provincial celebration aimed at contributing to the economic recovery goal of the province, which is anchored on the development of its agri-fishery and agri-eco-tourism sector. This is also to give emphasis on the province’s investment promotion tagline ‘Mangoes and More’. 

Governor JC Rahman Nava, in a press conference, invited neighboring provinces and city to experience this festival where they will introduce the crop which according to him has potential in the province during the festivities.

Governor JC Rahman Nava, in a press conference, invited neighboring provinces and city to experience this festival where they will introduce the crop which according to him has potential in the province during the festivities.

“For sure indi pa ni kakilala ang tanan, pero through this, I think, we would realize isa ini ka may potential nga patubas sang probinsya sang Guimaras," said Nava.

Currently, the Provincial Agriculture Office has identified 36 individual growers and some 17 hectares in the province have already been planted dragon fruit.

With the support of the Guimaras Agri-Eco Tourism Farm Owners, Operators 

and Association (GATFOOA) and dragon fruit growers, Nava said various activities will be conducted to highlight the event.

These activities include the Bike Caravan, festival are trade and jobs fairs, Dragon Fruit Kitchen, and "Dragon Fruit classroom."

BIKE CARAVAN

A bike caravan will open the festivities at 6:30 AM on Sept. 29 from Jordan Wharf going to the Provincial Capitol Grounds, the venue of the festivities.

Around 100 cyclists from 10 associations of bikers and neighboring provinces are expected to pedal from Jordan Wharf to the capitol grounds.

JOBS FAIR

The jobs fair which will be conducted also on the first day providing avenue for employers who are looking for their needed manpower and employment opportunities for job seekers.

Eleven employers have confirmed their participation at the job fair that will run from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Provincial Capitol Grounds

These companies include F&C Group of Companies; SM Supermarket-Mandurriao; IQOR Iloilo; Grandcars and Grandcanyon Multiholdings Inc.; Topserve Service Solutions, Inc.; Paramount Human Resource Multipurpose Cooperative; Waffle Time, Inc.; New Panay Agri-Ventures Development, Inc.; SYL; Hermanos Group of Companies; Angelina Bakeshop.

Mrs. Virginia Ganza, Supervising Labor and Employment Officer, said that 761 job vacancies are waiting for qualified Guimarasnon job seekers.

Job applicants are advised to bring their resume, application letter, copies of school credentials (Transcript of Records, diploma), and passport size ID picture.

TRADE FAIR

Another feature of the festival is the trade fair where a total of 27 exhibitors have signified their participation.

As Guimaras is Mangoes and More, other local products and delicacies of the island province will also be showcased in the trade fair with the dragon fruit locally produced as the centerpiece.

According to GATFOOA, around 1.4 metric tons of dragon fruit are up for grabs during the trade fair.

Nava said that even though the dragon fruit that will be displayed is not much, it is definitely of high quality because Guimaras is known for quality produced.

The fair will also feature crafts, herbal and organic products, processed foods, and a variety of plants.

Prizes are in store for the participating kiosks adjudged as Best Dressed Booths. The first placer will receive P5,000.00; second placer gets P3,000.00; and third placer, P2,000.00.

DRAGON FRUIT KITCHEN

On the other hand, the Dragon Fruit Kitchen, a demonstration of dragon fruit cuisine and dragon-fruit based products will feature Kulinarya chef from the Department of Tourism.

"Dragon Fruit classroom" will provide guests visiting the Trade Fair with information on the dragon fruit value chain.

The Dragon Fruit Festival is also a thanksgiving for the bountiful harvest of the local farmers where last year they were able to produce around 12.4 metric tons. (JBG/Guimaras PIO/laf/PIA6-Iloilo) 

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Lilibeth French

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Region 6

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