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Malagos named among world's top 50

110317 PH Paris Choco Show 1
(Left photo) Mr. Rex Victor Puentespina waves the Philippine flag with Mr. Val Turtur of the Philippine Cacao Industry Council during the recognition rites of the Top 50 International Cocoa Awards in Paris, France; (Right photo, courtesy of Ms. Dalareich Polot) the Philippine delegation to the Salon du Chocolat-Paris join Mr. Puentespina on stage at the International Cocoa Awards Night last October 30.

PARIS, FRANCE (31 October 2017) -- The maiden participation of seven (7) Filipino micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) at the 23rd edition of the Salon du Chocolat in Paris, considered the biggest chocolate exhibition in the world, was capped by the selection of Puentespina Farms as one of the TOP 50 producers of cacao beans around the world by the International Cocoa Awards last October 30. 

‪The recognition given to Puentespina Farms is a first for the Philippines in a competition that brought in 166 entries from 40 cacao producing countries.  The samples were "evaluated by 41 chocolatiers and sensory evaluation experts from around the world." 

‪Rex and Jen Puentespina, Farmer/Chocolate Maker, and Managing Director respectively of the same company behind the Malagos brand of chocolates, represented their mother Charita Puentespina during the recognition rites held at the sidelines of the Salon du Chocolat in Paris, France.  

Mr. Puentespina, who proudly waved a Philippine flag to honor their hardworking cacao farmers when called on stage said that "the recognition bestowed on our cacao beans grown in Davao, is a testament to the truly world-class quality of products grown and developed in the Philippines by Filipino cacao farmers." 

‪Joining the Puentespinas during the recognition rites were Philippine Cacao Industry Council Chairman Mr. Valente Turtur, representatives from the Philippine Embassy in Paris, the Department of Agriculture, and the Philippine Trade and Investment Centre in Paris. 

Also present during the recognition rites were representatives from Philippine cacao companies including Auro Chocolate, Ginto Chocolates, Hiraya, Kablon Farms, NutraRich, and Theo and Philo.

Together with Malagos Chocolates, and with funding support provided by the Department of Trade and Industry’s Export Marketing Bureau (DTI-EMB) and Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM),  the group showcased their products at the country’s first business-to-business booth ever set up at the Salon du Chocolat which ran in Paris from 28 October to 1 November.  

 110317 PH Paris Choco Show 3
In photo: Ambassador Ma. Theresa P. Lazaro (fifth from left) and  Consul Rapunzel Acop (rightmost) join the official delegation to the Salon du Chocolat at the Philippine Embassy in Paris, France. With them are (from left to right):  Commercial Attache Froilan Pamintuan of PTIC-Paris; Philo Chua of Theo and Philo; Mark Ocampo of Auro Chocolate; Valente Turtur of the Philippine Cacao Industry Council; Ambassador Lazaro; Regional Technical Director Marina Hermoso of the Department of Agriculture Region VII; Rex Puentespina of Puentespina Famrs/Malagos Chocolates; Harleen Jao of Nutrarich; Mrs. Lorina Turtur ; and Consul Acop.

DTI Undersecretary for Trade and Investment Promotion Group Nora Terrado, said that "the Philippine participation at the Salon du Chocolat is in line with the DTI's goal of providing relevant global platforms for Filipino enterprises to have access to, and learn from the international market." 

‪"The  business world is changing rapidly, and it is important for government, in collaboration with the private sector, to constantly identify and be part of truly global avenues where new opportunities for emerging niche sectors such as the cacao industry may be tapped or tested," added Usec Terrado.

Almost 120,000 attendees including traders, chocolate makers, chocolatiers and aficionados and more than 230 exhibitors flocked to Hall 5 of the Porte des Versailles for the five-day Salon du Chocolat.
 
The cacao industry in the Philippines currently produces around 12,000 metric tons of beans annually. It has doubled since the revival of the cacao industry in the early 2000s. The goal of the industry is to produce about 100,000 metric tons of quality beans by 2022.
 
Apart from merely targeting increasing production, cacao industry players are also taking an active role in helping improve its standards.♦ 
PH Paris Choco Show 4
In photo: The official delegation to the Salon du Chocolat pose before the Philippine booth along with PTIC-Paris Commercial Attache Froilan Pamintuan (third from left) and Eduardo Francisco of PTIC Paris (leftmost). The delegation includes (from left to right): Harleen Jao of NutraRich; Rex Puentespina of Puentespina Farms/Malagos; Pamintuan; Philo Chua of Theo and Philo; Estela Duque of Kablon Farms; Val Turtur of the Philippine Cacao Industry Council; Regional Technical Director Marina Hermoso of the Department of Agriculture Region VII; Joy Angeli Uy of Ginto Chocolates/Bohol; Dalereich Polot of Ginto Chocolates; Laurianne Amacin, stand assistant; Mark Ocampo of Auro Chocolate; Kelly Go of Auro Chocolate; and Francisco.
 DTI-CITEM at Maison et Objet
In photo: Philippine Ambassador to France, HE Ma. Theresa P. Lazaro  (eighth from left) joins Philippine exporters from the home, lifestyle and fashion industries – Agsam Fashion Fern, Beatriz, Catalina Embroideries, Finali, Kit Silver Jewellery, Megabijoux, Nature’s Legacy, Weave Manila  -- who were part of the country pavilion at the Maison et Objet held in Paris, France on 8-12 September 2017. Joining them are Froilan Pamintuan, Commercial Attache of the Philippine Trade and Investment (second from right); Rapunzel Acop of the Philippine Embassy in Paris (seventh from left);  Art Dimaano of the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions or CITEM (ninth from left); Chiqui Veneracion of Maison et Objet (sixth from left) and Eduardo Francisco of PTIC-Paris (leftmost).

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) through its attached agency, Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM) in coordination with the Philippine Trade and Investment Center in Paris (PTIC-Paris), recently participated at the Maison et Objet, the premier and largest French trade fair for interior design held on 8-12 September 2017 in Paris, France.

“The presence of DESIGN PHILIPPINES at this year’s Maison et Objet is a testament of DTI’s commitment to continuously support and provide global platforms for Filipino exporters and designers,” said DTI Undersecretary for Trade and Investments Promotion Group Nora K. Terrado.

The country’s participation in one of the world’s biggest lifestyle events which attracts over 75,000 visitors worldwide including interior designers, decorators, architects, hotel directors, art directors, stylists and trendsetters, showcased DesignPhilippines which highlighted and represented the country’s creative sensibilities.

Among the world-class Filipino companies showcased at the DesignPhilippines are: Agsam Fashion Fern, Beatriz, Catalina Embroideries, Finali, Kit Silver Jewellery, Megabijoux, Nature’s Legacy, and Weave Manila.

“We strive to open doors for our emerging designers and exporters to access global partners who frequent the world’s most important international trade shows such as the Maison et Objet which is held twice a year in Paris. This is key in enabling them to meet new trade buyers and be exposed to overseas markets,” Terrado added.

Led by DTI’s CITEM, DesignPHILIPPINES is a branding initiative that positions the Philippines as a sourcing destination for finely crafted products for the world market.

"We see the vital role that the government plays when it comes to accessing markets for our local exporters. As we participate in various international trade exhibits, we also seek the support of the private sector and businesses to collaborate with us in joining international trade fairs where they could potentially meet new buyers as well as promote Philippine design to the rest of the world," emphasized Terrado.

The Philippine participation to Maison et Objet was made possible through DTI-CITEM in coordination with the Philippine Trade and Investment Center in Paris {PTIC-Paris), the commercial arm of the Philippines in France.

"We see the vital role that the government plays when it comes to accessing markets for our local exporters. As we participate in various international trade exhibits, we also seek the support of the private sector and businesses to collaborate with us in joining international trade fairs where they could potentially meet new buyers as well as promote Philippine design to the rest of the world," emphasized Terrade.

Surigao del Sur-based Agsam Fashion Fern drew attention for its fashion accessories chiefly made from a local plant from which it derived its name. As a first time participant, its founder/owner, Ms. Gina Nebrida-Ty, represented Agsam Fashion Fern. The company does not only create unique product, but also fosters communities in Mindanao province by sustaining decades-old tradition and livelihood rooted on Agsam ferns.

Recently granted with the ASEAN Inclusive Business Award for Priority Integration Sector Excellence for their use of wood in their products, the group behind Nature's legacy also returned to Maison et Objet this year, after one of its companies, Floreia joined the Fashion Philippines booth at the Moisan et Objet in 2016. Mr. Pete Delantar, owner of Nature's Legacy is particularly happy to showcase the myriad of applications that run from occasional furniture, home and fashion accessories, outdoor and garden, and architecture, interior design and packaging at the Design Philippines booth this year.

MEGABIJOUX owns the brand Mele+Marie which is making a mark in the international scene with strategic and consistent presence in key international trade fairs in France, as well as in Asia and the United States. Ms. Rosemarie Oamil, who founded the company with husband Melencio, received international clients interested with their products, specifically their highend minaudieres. Megabijoux's products are noted for harnessing Cebu's artisanal heritage of highly technical concepts that require precision methods.

Beatriz also joined the Philippine pavilion for the second time as represented by Le Bon Mot. Beatriz by Carissa Cruz-Evangelista has already gained global attention with its signature texture which defines the collection's theme, i.e., a meticulous method wherein fine yarns are laid out by hand over the surface of the cuffs and clutch bags row by row.

Kit Silver Jewellery, a Filipino brand with 30 years of experience in gold, silver and brass, also returned for this year's Philippine participation. Marikris lmson, from whom the company was named after, said many of Kit Silver's displayed items combined the traditional art of jewelrymaking and latest designs which caught the attention of buyers not only from France, but also from the rest of Europe and the Middle East.

Catalina Embroideries and Finali Furniture And Home Accessories both from Cebu, are among the first-timers at the DESIGN PHILIPPINES Pavilion at the Maisonet Objet.

Catalina takes pride in its elegant and stylish decors, including the chandeliers and stools that attracted the eyes of guests at the Paris event. According to Joan Wang, Catalina uses only natural materials found in the Philippines, such as shell, coco, rattan, and the like, most of which are hand-loomed by their craftsmen. After Maison et Objet, some of their products were tapped to be showcased in a forthcoming event in Switzerland.

Meanwhile, Finali mainly featured its range of home accessories products and services, many of which have already graced the latest and more prominent hotel projects in the Philippines and the rest of the world. Ronalda Salazar and Angie Cadungog also look forward to further showcasing their dynamic furniture designs in France in the future.

Weave Manila gathered multiple inquiries from prospective customers, including from fashion designers, architects, retailers, and others, at their booth at the Maison et Objet. First-time participants at the DTI sponsored booth in France, the Tagle siblings said that they were happy with their presence in the event, which opened up opportunities and prospective buyers for them in France, and in other parts of the world for their custom-made Abaca handwoven carpets and rugs, offering a selection of natural color dyes and product designs.

According to CITEM Executive Director Clayton Tugonon, Philippine exporters and designers are truly world-class, and it is just fitting that their places in the international area are ensured by government in the future.♦

The Philippine Trade and Investment Center in Paris (PTIC-Paris) helped arrange business matching sessions for the Philippine Franchise Association (PFA) during the latter’s presence in the Franchise Expo Paris held on 19-22 March 2017 at the Parc des Expositions, Porte des Versailles.

PTIC in Franchise Expo Paris
Chairman Emeritus Mr. Samie Lim (center), PFA Vice Chairman Ms. Bing Sibal-Limjoco, and Francorp Philippines Director Benedict Lim welcomed interested overseas Filipinos and the Philippine Trade and Investment Center – Paris (PTIC-Paris) Director and Commercial Attache Froilan Emil Pamintuan (second from left), and PTIC-Paris Trade Assistant Ed Francisco (leftmost) to the Franchise Expo Paris last March 19 and 20.

During the Franchise Expo - Paris, the PFA officials also embarked on promotional efforts to invite participants to the FRANCHISE ASIA PHILIPPINES 2017, the region’s biggest 4-in-1 franchise show which will be held at the SMX Convention Center in Manila on July 19-23.

The Philippine Franchise Association (PFA) is the voluntary self-regulating governing body for franchising in the Philippines. It is the country's pioneer and largest franchise association with members ranging from micro to large, both homegrown and international involved in food, retail, services and other types of businesses.

Philippine Pavilion at the Salone Internazionale del Mobile - Milano
The Philippine Pavilion at the Salone Internazionale del Mobile - Milano

 

Buyers from India show interest in the products of Catalina Embroideries, including its chandelier and stools.

 

Philippine Consulate General’s Office in Milan join the exhibitors and officials from PTIC-Paris, CITEM and DCP
Consul General Marichu Mauro (front row, 4th from right) and her team from the Philippine Consulate General’s Office in Milan join the exhibitors and officials from PTIC-Paris, CITEM and DCP in a posterity shot in front of the Philippine Hall 12 booth at the 56th Salone Internazionale del Mobile - Milano.

The Philippine Trade and Investment Center in Paris (PTIC-Paris) joined the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM) for the third-straight year participation of the Philippines to the 56th edition of the Salone Internazionale del Mobile Milano. The event often dubbed as “the single-most important trade event and design fair for furniture and home fashion in the world” was held on April 4-7, 2017 at the Fiera Milano, Rho in Milan, Italy.

This year’s participation involved 4 manufacturers/exporters, namely, returning exhibitors -- A. Garcia Crafts (iron-wrought chairs and tables); and Atelier A (furniture made from Mindanao wood and coconut bark); and first-time Salone exhibitors -- Catalina Embroideries, Inc (coconut husk and wood made stools and furnishings) and Finali (rattan- and indigenous materials made furniture and decors).

Three designers also joined the Philippine exhibitors: Ms. Rachelle Dagñalan (knit-knock chairs), Mr. Stanley Ruiz (benjamin lamp), and Mr. Wataru Sakuma (paper and capiz lamp collection).

The exhibitors were featured in a 115 square meter Philippine pavilion located at Hall 12 Stand F08 at the Fiera Milano Fairgrounds.

The exhibitors initially shared with PTIC-Paris and CITEM that the 2017 edition of the Salone was a good venue for them to expand their market reach with inquiries also coming in from non-traditional markets such as Eastern Europe, Middle East and South Asia.

The Philippines was represented at the Premiere Classe exhibition held for high-end fashion accessories at the Tuileries grounds in Paris from 2-5 March 2017.

Premiere Classe has been around for 25 years. The original Premiere Classe event, held at the Porte de Versailles, usually runs simultaneously with the lifestyle and furniture trade show Maison et Objet, held every September; it usually has around 900 exhibitors.

A more upscale event, Premiere Classe Tuileries happens every March and September/October and has been running for about five years; they have about 400 exhibitors every staging.

Both events are staged by the WSN Developpement in support of the fashion industry, a key sector in France.

For the March 2-5 staging of the Premiere Classe Tuileries, considered by many as the best show for fashion accessories in the whole world, one Filipino company, Mele+Marie carried the Philippine flag.

Mele+Marie is a Cebu-based manufacturer of upscale minaudieres which highlighted their shell-resin collection at their company-rented booth during the event.

Mele+Marie designer owners with PTIC officials
Mr. Mel and Rosemarie Oamil (Second and fourth from left), designer-owners of the Mele+Marie, a Cebu-based manufacturer of minaudieres welcome visitors from PTIC-Paris Commercial Attache Froilan Pamintuan (leftmost) and representatives from at their booth at the Premiere Classe Tuileries last March 3.

 

There were designers of Filipino descent also who had their respective company booths including Rafe New York (USA); Ivy Kirshcner (USA); Zacarias1925 by Rita Nazareno (France); and Harvy Santos (UK).

This year’s edition covered three tents at the Tuileiries. Around 400 brands and designers featured their jewellery, shoes, leather goods and fashion accessories to an estimated 20,000 visitors.

Apart from Premiere Classe Tuileries event, there were other official side events such as the Capsule and the Man/Woman Fashion event, as well as fashion-related activities linked with the Paris Fashion Week.

This included pop-up events and fashion shows participated in by Filipino haute couture designers.

Participation at the Premiere Classe is considered tough with supposedly only the crème de la crème designers selected to exhibit at the Tuileries event by the organizers.

The Premiere Classe Tuileries is seen as a platform by designers to reach out to international buyers from around the world, not just from France, with buyers coming in from other parts of the world like the US, the rest of Europe, Middle East, and Asia.

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