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Tourism Chief thanks PBBM for “Chibog Tourism” endorsement as push for PH gastronomy tourism
Tourism Chief thanks PBBM for “Chibog Tourism” endorsement as push for PH gastronomy tourism
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Tourism Chief thanks PBBM for “Chibog Tourism” endorsement as push for PH gastronomy tourism
by Karen Ow-Yong07 May 2024
Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco led the opening of Philippine Eatsperience, a component of the DOT's flagship project Philippine Experience Program (PEP), launched last month in Intramuros and Rizal Park in Manila.

MANILA – The Department of Tourism (DOT) welcomes President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr.’s endorsement for the country’s gastronomy tourism, with emphasis on the importance of regional cuisines and the role of food in the world-renowned Filipino brand.

In a statement, DOT Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco thanked the President for his remark in his latest vlog, saying that this endorsement is a “big boost” in helping promote the Philippines’ gastronomy scene both in the domestic and international markets.

“Kami po sa Department of Tourism ay masayang masaya sapagkat mismong ang ating Presidente Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. ang nagpapatunay sa buong mundo kung gaano kasarap ang pagkain natin sa Pilipinas. Tama po si PBBM sa pagsasabi na “ang pinakamagandang regalo mo sa bisita ay masarap na pagkain,” Secretary Frasco said in Filipino.

“In promoting food tourism, we invite the world to embark on a culinary journey through the Philippines, where every dish tells a story and every meal fosters connections. Sama sama po tayo, together let us savor and share our culinary heritage, for in doing so, we not only tantalize taste buds but also cultivate sustainable tourism and celebrate the soul of our nation through food,” the Tourism Chief added.

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In his vlog, President Marcos stressed the role of gastronomy in the Filipino culture and encouraged the public to patronize and support local Filipino products.

“Patuloy po nating suportahan ang ating mga lokal na pagkain at produkto. Suportahan natin ang ating mga MSMEs. Para sa mga OFWs, ipasubok pa natin ang pagkaing Pilipino sa mga kaibigan tapos ay imbitahin na natin dito sa Pilipinas. Mabuhay ang pagkain at panlasang Pinoy,” Marcos said.

The boost for the promotion of the country’s gastronomy tourism is in line with the approved National Tourism Development Plan (NTDP) 2023-2028, also known as the blueprint of the tourism industry identifying Food Tourism as a priority product of the DOT.

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PH to host first UN Tourism Regional Forum on Gastronomy Tourism for Asia and the Pacific in June

In line with promoting the gastronomy tourism of the country as part of the expanded tourism portfolio, in alignment with the directive of the President, Frasco confirms that the Philippines will be hosting the First United Nations Tourism Regional Forum on Gastronomy Tourism for Asia and the Pacific slated on June 26 to 27 in Cebu.

“Our goal is to showcase how significant food is to our culture, and highlight our gastronomic delights and the Filipinos who excel in this craft. As the international event will bring together destinations and international experts for knowledge exchange, we also aim to create a platform to celebrate the transformative power of gastronomy tourism and how it benefits local communities and the environment,” Frasco said.

According to the DOT, the forum will serve as a platform to celebrate the power of gastronomy tourism and bring together destinations and international experts to exchange knowledge and best practices, to harness its transformative power, especially for the benefit of local communities and the environment.

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This event will be held as a prelude to the country’s hosting of the 36th Joint Commission Meeting for East Asia & the Pacific and South Asia on June 28, 2024, the DOT added.

The Philippine Eatsperience

The DOT also ventured into other gastronomic programs, such as the Philippine Eatsperience, a component of the DOT’s flagship project Philippine Experience Program (PEP).

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According to the DOT, the program recognized the pivotal role of food and gastronomy in shaping the country’s tourism landscape and strives to offer travellers an “authentic taste of Filipino hospitality” while visiting Intramuros and Rizal Park, where the program was launched last month.

The Filipino concept of “salu-salo" is the modality of the PEP program with regional launches completed in Davao Region, Calabarzon, the Bicol Region, Western Visayas, Ilocos Region, Zamboanga Peninsula, and Palawan, with more planned this year, DOT stated.

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DOT Sec. Frasco samples the different Filipino food made available during the launching of Philippine Eatsperience last month in Manila (Photo courtesy of DOT)

Halal Food and Tourism in the Philippines

Hala Tourism was also elevated as a major product of the Tourism Department, especially after the milestone win at the Halal in Travel Awards 2023 as an Emerging Muslim-friendly Destination.

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Currently, the DOT is focusing on staging the first-ever Halal Travel and Tourism Expo in Manila, while also developing a Muslim-friendly travelogue of the country.

As a move to equalize and regionalize tourism efforts and opportunities, the DOT is currently doing Halal orientations with its regional offices and aims to collaborate with RestoPH to provide more Muslim-friendly food and Halal-certified food in the metro, DOT confirms.

“We hope that with the President’s endorsement, we will foster a stronger community that would champion our local cuisines, and above all, give employment to more Filipinos," said Secretary Frasco.

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