GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/25 February) — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) plans to launch more coffee industrial tours in Sultan Kudarat province in a bid enhance the area’s thriving coffee industry.
Nelly Dillera, DTI-Sultan Kudarat provincial director, said they are looking at sustaining the coffee industrial tours in Senator Ninoy Aquino town as a strategy to draw more investments and further improve the industry’s market potentials.
DTI and the municipal government of Senator Ninoy Aquino earlier launched the industrial tours as part of the highlights of the Coffee Festival in the area last Feb. 12 to 15.
Dillera said they opened the industrial tours to mainly showcase the province’s coffee industry, which is mainly centered in the fertile upland plantations of Senator Ninoy Aquino town.
“Our goal is to draw more visitors to the area, compel coffee players to improve their farms as well as generate sales for local enterprises,” she said in a statement.
The recent industrial tours were initially handled by the SNA (Senator Ninoy aquino) Coffee Industry Development Council, she said.
Dillera said the tour package included coffee drinking at a traditional coffee shop situated near a popular waterfall and a tour at a coffee nursery, coffee plantation and coffee roasting and grinding processing firm in the area.
Highlighted in the tour was a technology adopted by local coffee farmers who were able produce as much as 1,000 kilograms of coffee per hectare, she said.
She said they also inserted a visit to the Neo-Country Crafts, a local producer of top quality souvenir items made of abaca.
“For those who want to spend the night in the area, the tour may also include an overnight stay at Elan’s Haven Resort, a mountain resort where visitors could go on swimming, horseback riding, camping and trekking along the Tinalon Cave, which is also part of the resort,” Dillera said.
Sultan Kudarat province is presently considered as the country’s biggest coffee producer.
Region 12 or the Soccsksargen Region currently produces around 28,000 metric tons of coffee annually, the bulk of which is sourced from Sultan Kudarat.
The region comprises the provinces of South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat, Sarangani and North Cotabato as well as the cities of General Santos, Koronadal, Tacurong, Kidapawan and Cotabato. (Allen V. Estabillo/MindaNews)