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Water hyacinth, a special attraction at the Market Week Philippines on Sept 19-23 at the SM Megamall
Thursday, September 13, 2012
Calamba City, Laguna (September 12, 2012) -- The Market Week Philippines will feature Calabarzon's special setting at the MegaTrade Halls 1, 2 & 3, SM Megamall, Mandaluyong City, that would showcase all the products of the ten (10) regions under the Water Hyacinth Development Program, a flagship program of the Department of Trade and Industry's Regional Operations and Development Group (DTI-RODG).
Products made out of water hyacinth ranges from simple 'bayong' bags to the 'leatherized' fashion bags, file folders, slippers, wallets, and even gowns and furniture, including fertilizers and green charcoal briquettes.
The regions under the program are the Ilocos Region, Central Luzon, CALABARZON, Bicol, Western Visayas, Norther Mindanao, SOCCSKSARGEN, CARAGA, Cordillera Autonomous Region, and the National Capital Region.
Formerly the National OTOP Expo, the Market Week Philippines is a trade fair and showground of home, food and fashion products from all regions of the country..
"It's where the best of the country's fresh and processed food; furniture and furnishings, home décor, gifts and houseware and holiday décor; and footwear, apparel, fashion accessories and jewelry, converge", said DTI Calabarzon regional director Marilou Quinco-Toledo.
The global financial crisis in the last quarter of 2008 prompted the government to come up with emergency employment projects and livelihood programs to mitigate the adverse effect of the crisis.
As a response, Calabarzon conceptualized the Water Lily Development Project, a component of the Laguna Livelihood Emergency Accelerated Program (LEAP), which aims to clean up the Laguna Lake by utilizing the perpetually-abounding water hyacinth and transform them from waste to inputs for value-added products.
In 2010, with its significant contribution to the local economy aside from its role in sustaining the ecology, the program - dubbed the 'Water Hyacinth Development Program' - was included as one of the National OTOP flagship programs of DTI-RODG.
The program also conveyed the green advocacy by creating a shift in the use of the traditional, non-biodegradable plastic materials to the use of eco-friendly water hyacinth.
From its inception as a flagship program in 2010 up to the first semester of 2012, the Water Hyacinth Development Program posted a total of Php13.77 million in investments; generated domestic sales amounting to Php 21.12 million, and created 3,021 jobs.