Vigan City trade fair promotes Ilocos Sur’s robusta as ‘Best Coffee in the World’

VIGAN CITY, Ilocos Sur (PIA) — The provincial government of Ilocos Sur and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Ilocos kicked off the Coffee Festival in this province on Monday to boost the local coffee industry.

The fair, held at the Provincial Farmers Livelihood Development Center, was organized together with the Ilocos Sur Export Enterprise and Development (ISEED) Marketing Cooperative.

Some 20 exhibitors including three local growers, 15 coffee shops in the province, and five national sponsors joined the five-day event.

Local coffee growers, suppliers, and sponsors joining the five-day Coffee Festival in Vigan City. PIA/ATV)

Booths of participating coffee shops in the Coffee Festival at the Provincial Farmers Livelihood Development Center in Vigan City. PIA/ATV)

“Dito sa Ilocos Sur ang number one [product] is tobacco, nakikita ko itong coffee sumusunod na ‘yan kasi market natin ay all over the world. This festivity is also a call for us to patronize our local coffee because we already have the best Robusta coffee in the world,” Governor Jeremias Singson said in his message during the opening ceremony.

He said, “Let us strengthen the coffee industry in the province of Ilocos Sur, our campaign should be as strong as the coffee that we have. Cheers to growing the best Robusta coffee beans, in every sip of the coffee that you [local farmers] produce, we smell the aroma of hope and taste of the success of this industry.”

Singson further acknowledged the hard work and dedication of the local growers and encouraged the businessmen to source the local beans from the farmers to show their support and love for their own identity.

Meanwhile, Mark Joseph Rabena, owner of a new coffee business called Mobile Cube Café, said the festival started well.

Rabena said, “Maganda kasi hindi lang kaming mga barista at coffee shop owners ang highlight kundi iyong mga farmers natin na nanalo at nag-represent sa kape natin, award winning na Robusta coffee [during the Philippine Coffee Quality Competition].”

Governor Jerry Singson of Ilocos Sur thanks the local coffee farmers at the Coffee Festival in Vigan City. PIA/ATV

“Maraming kagaya ko na nagsisimula ulit after ng Super Typhoon Egay na nangangailangan ng tulong at itong festival ay malaking tulong dahil may mga sponsors dito at mga suppliers na may machines, gatas, iba’t ibang syrup na kailangan, brewer, at vessel,” Rabena said.

In the first two days of the festival, Mishelle Tongson, chairperson of the ISEED Marketing Cooperative, said that they had already sold out the green coffee beans.

For this festival, the local government also prepared competitions and coffee talks for the participating growers and coffee baristas in the province. (JCR/AMB/ATV, PIA Ilocos Sur)

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