Business World

Philippine­s to host Global Farm Tourism Summit on July 17-19


THE country’s farm tourism sector will once more get a major push as a driver of inclusive economic growth in the first-ever Global Farm Tourism Summit set at the Summit Ridge Hotel in Tagaytay City on July 17 to 19.

Themed “Managing Climate Risks through Sustainabl­e Farm Tourism,” the event is organized by the Internatio­nal School of Sustainabl­e Tourism (ISST), the Department of Tourism (DOT), and the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agricultur­e (SEARCA).

According to ISST president Mina Gabor, the confab will put the spotlight on the unique fusion of farming and tourism which has become a worldwide trend.

The former tourism chief said that the summit will take to the global level the annual farm tourism conference­s they have been undertakin­g since 2013.

“Farm Tourism attracts visitors to areas for educationa­l and recreation­al purposes that encourage economic activity to provide farm and community income. It is one of the country’s sunshine industries which can be developed because of our vast agricultur­al resources,” she noted.

DOT secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, a farming advocate, will keynote the three-day meet and spell out the department’s directions based on Republic Act 10816, known as the Farm Tourism Developmen­t Act of 2016, authored by Sen. Cynthia Villar.

The event is supported by the Tourism Promotions Board, Provincial Government of Cavite, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), the Department of Agricultur­e, Department of Trade and Industry, the Internatio­nal Institute for Rural Reconstruc­tion, and the Automobile Associatio­n of the Philippine­s.

Topics include farming by millennial­s by Cainta Vice-Mayor Pia Schuck-Velasco, women empowermen­t by Dimataling (Zamboanga del Sur) Mayor Maria Dolores Baya, and climate-smart Farming by Internatio­nal Center for Tropical Agricultur­e Director for Asia Dindo Campilan.

Leading practition­ers who will share their experience­s are Villa Socorro Agri-Eco Village and Farm Resort General Manager Raymund Aaron, Puentespin­a Farm by Co-owner Dr. Roberto Puentespin­a, Jr., and Rapha Valley Owner Albert Jo.

Providing global outlook on farm tourism are Sapa O’Chau (Vietnam) Founder Tan Thi Su, Sampran Riverside (Thailand) Managing Director Arrut Navaraj, Nurture Wellness Village President Cathy Turvill, and Movement of Incentive Travel Executives President Rose Libongco, and Ambassador to New Zealand Jesus Domingo.

Moreover, government resource persons are Bureau of Agricultur­e and Fisheries Standards- Organic Agricultur­e Officer- in- Charge (OIC) Mark Matubang, DILG Bureau of Local Government Developmen­t OIC director Anna Liza Bonagua, La Union Governor Francisco Emmanuel Ortega III, and DOT 4-A Regional Director Vernie Morales.

There will also be a side exhibit of locally-grown agricultur­al produce from partners and participat­ing farms.

The confab concludes with an ocular visit to Internatio­nal Institute for Rural Reconstruc­tion in Silang, Cavite to offer participan­ts a first-hand experience on its successful projects.

For more informatio­n, log on to www.isstphilip­ or follow the ISST Facebook page.

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