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    Confab to showcase Bohol’s growing farm tourism industry

     By Bernard Supetran

    After a five-year hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the International School of Sustainable Tourism (ISST) is bringing back the Philippine Farm Tourism Conference to be held at The Bellevue Resort in Panglao, Bohol on February 26 – 28.

    Now on its 7th edition, the international event will be hosted by the Provincial Government of Bohol and supported by the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA).

    Themed, “Farm Tourism: Consciousness for Healthy Living and New Experiences,” the conference will showcase learnings from the pandemic, and share best practices which seeks to provide social and economic empowerment to communities.

    Bohol Bee Farm in Dauis

    According to ISST president Mina Gabor, this year’s conference will focus on sustainable growth through the cultivation of fruit and vegetable farms, aquaculture and artisanal fisheries, and green investments in farm tourism.

    The former tourism chief said that the confab will also have a DTI -led exhibition area for agricultural produce and by-products, and a farm tour which will visit the notable farm tourism sites in Bohol.

    Topics to be discussed include hospitality industry embracing sustainable farm-to-table concept, processing fruits and vegetables – key to food security, right marketing and revenue, value added benefits of artisanal fisheries, revival of the country’s multi–million seaweeds industry, the pompano fish as upcoming star of aquaculture, and green investment in agriculture and tourism in the Asian setting.

    Kinaiyahan Forest Park in Bilar

    The conference will also confer the 4th Lakbay Bukid Awards to five local and foreign individuals and organizations which have contributed to the development of farm tourism in Asia.

    Bohol first district congressman Edgar Chatto noted that the event will be an opportunity to showcase the island province as the country’s first UNESCO Global Geopark in 2023 which recognized its rich terrestrial and marine attributes spread out in a 8,808-sq km area.

    Chatto, the chairperson of the House of Representatives Climate Change Committee, will also be among the resource persons in the 3-day gathering.

    Asin Tibouk making in Alburquerque, Bohol

    Participants will tour notable farm sites, such as Loboc Cacao Farm, Asin Tibuok makers in Alburquerque, Kinaiyahan Forest Park in Bilar, Lasang Cacao Farm in Maribojoc, Green Thumb Farm in Corella, South Farm in Panglao, Bohol Bee Farm in Dauis, Manay’s Farm in San Miguel, Ubay Dairy Farm, and Jagna Recycling Facility and Eco Farm.

    The group will also visit the province’s iconic attractions of Tarsier Sanctuary in Corella, and the Chocolate Hills Natural Monument in Carmen.

    The Bellevue Resort

    This event supported by the ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity, Department of Tourism, Tourism Promotions Board, Department of Agriculture – Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, Philippine Exporters Confederation (Philexport), the Department of Trade and Industry, and Philippine Airlines as official carrier

    For more details, contact (02) 8442-2998, 0977–2946763, 0966-2430529, email info.isstphilippines@gmail.com or events.isstphilippines@gmail.com, or visit www.isst.edu.ph or its Facebook page Isstphilippines.

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