Tagum City: Philippines's Durian Capital?

I searched Google one time to see whether or not my weblog is easily searchable and had dropped by this site that truly caught my attention, mainly because it mentioned of a name that is my hometown, Tagum City, a solemn, yet-developing city on Davao City's north. Although I should take pride on what the blog article said, it got a brow of mine raised. I know my hometown's been celebrating Durian Festival since last year but it never occured to me that the government of Tagum wanted to be Philippines's Durian Capital. I think Davao City would be the best one to hold the title, if it's willing to let go of a title it already holds.

Anyway, here's what the article said, as found in http://lakbaypilipinas.com/blog/2007/08/30/


Tagum City wants to be the Philippines Durian
Capital

by: mellovillareal.com

durian, durian festival, tagum city, mayor uy, devil's fruit
Stirring up enterprises, generating employment, increasing farmers’ income, turning idle lands into productive lots are rolled into one as Tagum City bids to become the region’s Durian capital. Beyond gaining the name Durian Capital, the City government wants to help Durian farmers who have been beneficiaries of plant-now-pay later program of the local government, to directly access the market for them to enjoy a much better price than what middlemen can offer, Regional and Tagum City Tourism Council chairperson Alma Uy said.


It is staging a two-week event, the Durian Festival which will run from September 2 to September 16 at Tagum City Freedom Park.


Other than offering durian to feast on, the event is expected to unfold a package of entertainment such as durian culinary arts competitions, lectures on beverage and pastry making out of durian and durian farm tours.


While the festival basically offers a good time for Durian farmers to generate income it will empower students from schools and colleges in the city to gain knowledge in doing business as a value-added venture of producing Durian.


“We also want to generate employment and create more businesses out of the industry,” Uy said.


Among others, there will be lectures on making ensaymada, Durian jam, Durian tarts, Durian candies, Durian cakes and Durian coffee.


The “Eat All You Can” of Chanee and Monthong Durian will cap the last day of the festival on September 16, but farm tours will go on even
beyond the event.


Meanwhile, Uy said the organizing committee had decided to peg prices of Durian sold during the festival at P40 to P45 a kilo, a level which, she said, is favorable for the farmers and affordable for the consuming public.


While other selling points of Durian could drop prices off to a much lower level, those sold during the festival have added value because “we are giving a much better ambience with a variety of entertainment,” Uy explained.

Uy, however wanted to correct the wrong impression that Tagum City wanted to grab an event that was of Davao City in origin.


“No. There is no such thing as Durian Festival in Davao City that is supported by the city government,” she said.


Tagum City currently has about 200 hectares planted with Durian. It may not have a huge volume Davao City has but Uy said the Durian Festival organizing committee can readily get a back-up supply from growers in other areas of Davao del Norte and in Compostela Valley.


On the other hand, Faustino Salting, president of Davao del Norte and Compostela Valley Fruit Industry Development Council in the same forum could not ascertain the volume of Durian that could be made available during the Festival.


In a separate interview, he placed the estimate at 150 tons at half a ton in each of the 20 stalls within the 15-day duration of the festival.


Salting said projection on production and supply level could hardly be determined because there had been no available profile of the Durian industry.


“We have to work on this along with improving the quality of our produce and the volume of our production” he said.


He, however, said that the event is a factor paving way towards turning idle grasslands into productive lots.


“Durian can help prevent floods, can help us always experience good weather here, and can make those idle lands productive,” he said.

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