CITEM targets P10.5 B sales from food expo

Louella Desiderio (The Philippine Star) - May 25, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The export promotions arm of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) expects local and international food exhibitors to generate more than P10.5 billion worth of sales from the country’s biggest trade expo which opened.

In a statement, the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM) said it set the sales target for around 657 local and international food exhibitors at the 13th edition of the International Food Exhibition (IFEX) Philippines being held at the World Trade Center Metro Manila and the Philippine Trade Training Center until Sunday.

Organized by the CITEM with the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Development Council, the Department of Agriculture and the Philippine Exporters Confederation Inc., IFEX Philippines NXTFOOD ASIA is considered the country’s biggest business-to-business (B2B) event for Asian food and ingredients.

During the event, negotiations between buyers and exhibitors are expected to take place.

For this year’s edition, more than 2,000 international and local buyers have signed up to attend and check out products and services being offered by exhibitors.

Top sources of international buyers for the upcoming event are the US, United Arab Emirates, China, Japan, Australia, Canada, Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea and Qatar.

The three-day event features Asian and Philippine food products from 10 food sectors such as alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages; coffee, herbal tea and cocoa; fresh and processed seafood; fruits and vegetables; grains, cereals and commodities; herbs and spices;  meat and poultry; natural, healthy, and organic products; specialty, ethnic, and gourmet products; and food processing equipment, packaging materials, refrigeration and storage.

“We have strengthened our event marketing and Very Important Buyer (VIB) program to attract international buyers who include international and local retailers, wholesalers, specialty store owners, importers, buying agents, hotelier or restaurateurs,” CITEM executive director Pauline Suaco-Juan said.

“We are also expecting big buyer delegations to check out the latest offering of Philippine and Asian food in IFEX Philippines such as the chocolate buying missions from Belgium and San Francisco, Shanghai firms as well as the group from Guangdong International Food Association,” she added.

Top VIBs participating in IFEX Philippines this year include TNT Supermarket Inc. from Canada; Heuschen & Schrouff Oriental Foods Trading B.V. from the Netherlands; Beagley Copperman BV from Belgium; H Mart GBK and Pure Sales Inc. from the US; Lulu Hypermarket LLC, Al Maya Group, Al Rawabi Group of Companies and New Era Gulf General Trading LLC from UAE; Truebell Marketing and Trading LLC and Integral Food Services WLL from Qatar; Hurxley Corp. and Cocowell Corp. from Japan; Hyundai Green Food and Eland Retail from South Korea; and Goodfarmer Foods Holding (Group) Co. Ltd. and Shanghai Laiyifen Co. Ltd. from China.

To help buyers identify and screen potential business partners, CITEM opened the IFEX Connect program or a customized platform for integrated B2B matching services.

Exhibitors and buyers can also make use of the G-Mart Private Label Matching Program, which is a premium business matching platform connecting Philippine manufacturers of private-label food products to international retail giants and top grocers.

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