Seven (7) out of 12 local cacao products were launched as Region 02’s cacao brands during the 3rd Cagayan Valley Cacao Industry Business Forum held on August 17, 2018 at the Department of Agriculture-Southern Cagayan Research Center in Minanga Norte, Iguig, Cagayan.

The Forum was a joint undertaking of the Department of Trade and Industry-R02, Department of Agriculture-RF02, Department of Environment and Natural Resources-R02 and the Cagayan Valley Cacao Industry Development Council (CVCIDC).

Bearing the theme “Cultivate for Prosperity and Sustainability”,the activity focused on optimizing the opportunities and strengths of Region 02 in pursuing the inclusive development of the cacao industry. 

Evidently, the event was a welcome to the community with over 400 stakeholders in attendance, composed of cacao farmers, processors, traders, NGOs, investors, academe, government agencies and local government units to whom were presented the new pride of the valley – the local cacao brands.

The Forum was graced by the Chief of Staff of Senator Cynthia Villar, Atty. Rhaegee Tamaña, the Keynote Speaker, who said that indeed “Region 02 is Bountiful Cagayan Valley” because of the diversity of its resources and crops. While Region 02 is largely known for rice and corn production, he said that “it is delightful to know that it also produces high value crops such as cacao and coffee, which are among the priorities of the agriculture sector of the government.

The forum included plenary discussions by prominent national cacao figures like Mr. Michael Caballes, Owner of Bukid Amara; DTI-ABRA Provincial Director Arell F. Bañez, representing the National Cacao Industry; and Ms. Dalareich Polot –Chocolate Princess of the Philippines, Chocolatier and Owner of the Ginto Luxury Chocolate.

The launching of the local cacao brands highlighted the event, along with the signing of the Cagayan Valley Cacao Roadmap 2018-2022.

“What brought us here continues to ignite us all to create a better environment for the cacao stakeholders of today and tomorrow. Passion and perseverance will surely lead us to prosperity”, said DTI-02 RD Ruben Diciano in his message.