Farm tourism pushed in Mindanao

Published June 29, 2019, 2:48 PM

by Francine Ciasico

By Mike Crismundo 

BISLIG CITY –Seeing a viable alternative or complement to the usual beach attractions and other tourism-related activities, more than 200 delegates in the 23rd Caraga Business Conference are pushing for the adoption of farm tourism that will provide other opportunities and diversification in income for small-scale farmers and indigenous people (IP) organizations.

“This will surely add income to locals,” said Department of Tourism (DOT) Region 13 Director Ma. Ana T. Nuguid. The DOT Caraga Region 13 has stepped up efforts in identifying possible tourism farming sites to further boost the tourism industry in various parts of the region, according to Chief Tourism Operations Officer Mary Jean A. Camarin.

So far, out of 70 potential tourism farm sites, four have already been accredited as farm tourism sites. They are Agri-Tourism/ Farm Site Alameda Farm located in Hamburger Hills, Gata, San Agustin, Surigao del Sur; Agri-Tourism/ Farm Site JB Nature Farm and Resort in Purok 7, Barangay Sukailang, Surigao City; Agri-Tourism/ Farm Site Mejares Fun Farm in Mamprasanon, Banahao, Linaga, Surigao del Sur; and Agri-Tourism/ Farm Site Sogbohan Agri Training Institute, Inc. (SATI Farm) in Sogbohan Islet, Purok 3, Barangay Bagumbayan, Dinagat, Dinagat Islands province.

The DOT officials urged the delegates of the 23rd CBC coming from the various regions in Mindanao to help explore other potential farm tourism areas.

“We hope that they (business leaders) can help us explore more possible tourism farming sites in an effort to continuously spur our tourism program,” Nuguid said.

Agri-tourism is expected to be a viable alternative or complement to the usual beach attractions and activities which will likewise boost farmers’ earning potentials, stressed Camarin.

Employment will also be boosted and food security program, they said.

“Farm eco-tourism will also open up a new perspective of livelihood, especially for IP groups, towards an inclusive and sustainable economic development” Nuguid added.

Meanwhile, in the same forum, Trade and Industry Undersecretary Abdulgani M. Macatoman also pushed for the establishment of more farm tourism sites in Mindanao, saying “these will provide added income to local villagers”.