By Dolly Yasa
BACOLOD City – Organizers of this year’s Negros Trade Fair at the Glorietta, Makati are optimistic to surpass the sales last year despite a drop on the opening day.
Nicole Marie Mana-it Bacalangco, NTF spokesperson, told the Daily Guardian that the opening day sales last September 26, 2023, were lower compared to last year.
She said last year’s opening day sales were P9.1 million compared to this year’s P7.2 million or a difference of P1.9 million.
Bacalangco said the opening day sales decreased because “some exhibitors weren’t able to finish setting up their booths and were not able to sell their goods.”
“We are optimistic we can recover,” she said.
There are 91 exhibitors this year compared to 57 last year.
The NTF sales are starting to pick up with the sales on the second day, September 27, 2023, at P8.9 million, and on Thursday the total sales were registered at P16.2 million.
Last year’s total sales were P39 million.
The 37th edition of the NTF opened Tuesday night at the Glorietta Activity Center in Makati, with almost all provincial officials led by Negros Occidental governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and vice governor Jeffrey Ferrer in attendance.
Lacson said the primary aim of the NTF is to provide a platform for micro, small, and medium-sized entrepreneurs to expand their markets.
He said the provincial government is currently assisting 204 micro-enterprises from 31 cities and municipalities, giving them support in processing their produce through the Capitol shared service facility which includes equipment for canning, juice and meat processing, and vegetable drying, with products now on display.
Ferrer led members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, capitol department heads, and several local chief executives in joining the governor to attend the annual trade fair spearheaded by the Association of Negros Producers (ANP).
Among national government officials who witnessed the trade fair were Senators Imee Marcos, Cynthia Villar, Grace Poe, and Defense Secretary Gilbert Teodoro.
The governor said that the success of the trade fair “is a testament to our joint efforts, aimed at showcasing to the world that Negros Occidental and Negrense products indeed belong to global standards.”
This year’s NTF is themed “Amuma” and will run until October 1, 2023, it’s the second year it resumed after the pandemic.
The Negros Trade Fair is the country’s longest-running provincial trade fair happening each year in Metro Manila, now in its 37th year.