Franco-Filipino gastronomy and friendship
Filipino-French restaurateur and content creator Erwan Heussaff
Ministry of Commerce and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez
Secretary of the Department of Tourism Bernadette Romulo-Puyat
The French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the Philippines welcomed more than 430 participants to the two-day event “Behind the Kitchens” from October 22-23. In the presence of key government officials and industry experts, attendees discussed the latest updates and trends in the manufacturing, logistics, and food and beverage sectors.
With the aim of expanding aid to local farmers in the Philippines, this event supported their beneficiary partner, AGREA – an agriculture-focused, purpose-built and inclusive Filipino company that empowers farmers and their communities as agents. impactful change.
Among the speakers and panelists invited to this very informative event were the Ambassador of France MichÃ¨le Boccoz, the Secretary of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry Ramon Lopez, the Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, the Director General of the Kantar Worldpanel division Marie-Anne Lezoraine, vice-president of Teleperformance Entreprise Joseph Dy, Dannah Majarocon, general manager of Lalamove, Jos Ortega, president and general manager of Havas Ortega and Cherrie Atilano, CEO and founder of AGREA.
Throughout the two days, various opportunities for attendees to engage and learn more about the industry unfolded through virtual networking sessions, panel discussions and a live cooking demonstration by the restaurateur. and Filipino-French content creator Erwan Heussaff.
In his remarks, Secretary Lopez said that in 2020, France was recorded as the Philippines’ 16th trading partner, 15th export market and 17th import supplier. He listed the Philippine export products to include digital monolithic integrated circuits or integrated circuits, other parts of airplanes and helicopters, spectacle lenses and other materials, among others.
â€œAs we can see among the main export products, food and beverages, as well as agricultural products, are not included in this list. However, through our Philippine Trade and Investment Center in Paris, or our office commercial in France, we have been strengthening our promotional process in specialties such as bananas, pineapples, coconut-based products, such as dedicated coconuts, coconut milk, cream, sugar. cocoa and tuna prepared or preserved in your country, â€said Lopez.
“This shows that there is still room for improvement and opportunities for our French companies and investors for trade in the food and drink sector,” he continued.
Lopez also recalled that while the French and Filipino cultures have a lot in common, their mutual love for food is the most important point of common interest.
â€œWhile both of our nations are proud of what our culture has to offer, our taste buds are always open to the kitchens of our friends and neighbors. Here in the Philippines, our fellow Filipinos have grown to love the taste of French cuisine, pastries and baked goods, â€enthuses Lopez.
“And because of these restaurants and cafes, French cuisine has inspired our fellow citizens as well, as we see many restaurants of French inspiration but owned by Filipinos who are frequented by consumers interested in trying new and different tastes,” he added.
Lopez then happily shared that in 2020 e-commerce and food and beverage use increased 210% due to the pandemic. Meanwhile, local food manufacturers have started selling online, the rise of resellers and micro-SMEs, including those offering food ingredients, has also been observed.
According to Secretary Lopez, the Department of Trade and Industry remained committed to tackling these adverse effects of the pandemic.
Our efforts to respond effectively to the global pandemic have been guided by our strategic objectives: namely, to create an enabling environment for business, to improve access to finance, to strengthen management and workforce capacities, to improve access to technology and innovation and provide market access. “said Lopez.
Regarding Covid’s response, Secretary Puyat also reported that the country’s food and beverage sector is slowly recovering, which has been one of the hardest hit by the pandemic.
“Fortunately, as more Filipinos get vaccinated and new cases of Covid have steadily declined, some of the restrictions and the mobility of individuals are relaxed,” Puyat revealed.