CITEM kicks off first digital food expo

A year before the pandemic hit in 2019, the Philippine agri-food sector turned in a strong showing, accounting for an estimated P6.1T to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).

The same year also saw the sector employ 42.7% of the national workforce.

In the new normal that changed our lives and livelihoods forever, The Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM) tries to recapture the same momentum for one of our country’s most lucrative export sectors.

This is made possible through the first-ever digital iteration of its banner sourcing event for Philippine food, the IFEX Digital Expo 2021, from September 23-25.

“One of the many things that the pandemic brought forth is the need to connect—now more than ever. COVID changed the way we at CITEM worked, especially with heightened activity online. With borderless communication at our disposal, we present through this expo how we can conduct the business of food in the new normal,” CITEM Executive Director Pauline Suaco-Juan shares.

Themed “Salu-salo,” IFEX Digital Expo brings together business owners, restaurateurs, hoteliers, farmers, food manufacturers and distributors, retailers, culinary professionals and foodies.

The event serves as a medium for strengthening the food community through storytelling, knowledge sharing, and creating dialogue.

This year’s show features over 200 exhibitors from all over the country.

There are also invited industry experts from global organizations and local government agencies who will share their knowledge and insights on trends, opportunities, and techniques related to food. Networking and business-to-business matching sessions will also be part of the online event’s features.

One of the highlights of the IFEX Digital Expo is the launch of two online platforms foodphilippines.com and www.ifexconnect.com, developed by CITEM. FOODPhilippines.com will be the website of the banner brand for all of CITEM’s events and initiatives for the Philippine food sector. Meanwhile, IFEXConnect.com will serve as the agency’s new promotion and lead generation platform for the country’s food export industry.

In addition to the informative discussions, the expo is set to excite the palate through happy hour sessions such as coffee brewing. Take in the rich aromas and flavors of Philippine coffee on Day 1.

Savor mouthwatering dishes as Chef Angelo Guison explores the flavorful gifts of coconut, from tree to plate, in Coco Pop on Day 2.

Distinguish craft from draft with the Craft Beer Association of the Philippines and Philippine craft kings beer connoisseur Jazel Paraiso, as you sample a beer set and learn about beer-food pairing on Day 3.

The IFEX Digital Expo 2021 is organized with the help of RAPID Growth, Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Export Marketing Bureau-Halal (EMB-Halal), Philippine Coconut Authority, and DTI Regional Offices.

To join IFEX Digital Expo, register for free at https://bit.ly/IFEXDigitalExpo.