Davao City (July 16, 2015) – Muslim and non-Muslim exhibitors all over Mindanao showcased an array of halal food and halal-certified products in the two-day exhibition dubbed 1st Mindanao Halal Festival on July 15-16 at the Abreeza Ayala Mall, Davao City.Escider Inc., a business investment firm spearheaded the two-day halal festival that features foods, apparel, fashion accessories, organic products and other services that are halal certified. The National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF) with the Islamic Chamber of Commerce, ARMM’s Science and Technology department (DOST-ARMM) and the Davao City government supported the event.
The 1st Mindanao Halal Festival is aimed at attracting more investors and partners to put up potential halal investments in Mindanao. The event provides entrepreneurs producing halal products an opportunity through the two-day market exposure. It also serves as a key focal point for education of halal practices and what it means to improve business integrity through values perpetuated by truly halal role models.
“This will help out entrepreneurs not only in ARMM but all over Mindanao and the country to promote skills and products that are halal certified,” said Ester Rulona, one of the exhibitors.
DOST-ARMM Secretary Myra Mangkabung reiterated that the two-day halal event also offers a chance for consumers to explore the diversity of the halal food market and its potential. “Muslim Mindanao has great potentials to become a main source of halal products, which could spur the region’s economy,” said Sec. Mangkabung.
Among of the highlights of the festival is the launching of the country’s first halal ordinance in Davao City and the Mindanao-wide Qur’an recital competition. For each night of the two-day event, the public will able to taste various halal foods through a nightly food festival with dishes based on Mindanaoan cuisine. Winners of the competition will receive monetary price and an all-expense paid pilgrimage trip to Mecca next year.
“We should further develop and promote our halal food particularly for export to also make our tourist destinations in the Philippines more friendly to Muslim tourists,” said NCMF Secretary Yasmin Busran-Lao. “Halal food is consumed by even non-Muslim consumers because it has highest standards of food safety,” she added.
As of May 31, the halal-certifying bodies accredited by the NCMF include Muslim Mindanao Halal Certification Board Inc., Mindanao Halal Authority Inc. and Halal International Chamber of Commerce and Industries of the Philippines Inc.
The NCMF is a national commission mandated under Article 2 Section 8 of the Republic Act 9997 to promote and develop the Philippine Halal Industry and accredit halal-certifying entities/bodies for the utmost benefit of Muslim Filipinos and in partnership or cooperation with appropriate agencies individuals and institutions here and abroad.
In ARMM, the DOST plans to conduct a halal congress in October this year to help propel the region’s bid to get a slice of the multi-billion global halal market. (Bureau of Public Information)