By Isaac T. Abello
"You eat with your eyes," said Emmanuel Reyes of Philippine Food Processors and Exporters Organization, Inc. (Philfoodex), speaking on product marketing, before the participants in the first regional Techno Gabay Summit and Technomart hosted by the Western Visayas Agriculture and Resources Research and Development Consortium (WESVARRDEC) in Iloilo City recently.
Admiring the products displayed in the summit, Reyes said that West Visayas has many agriculture products to be proud of but still needs some fine-tuning in order to make them more attractive to consumers and investors.
Reyes said that products must appeal to customers, quoting his Japanese colleague who said that “you eat with your eyes.” This means that products must satisfy the eyes first. They should first attract the customer visually.
MS Tubongbanua's mango process products (see photo) project the freshness and delicacy that cannot fail to attract the common buyer. (Photo by Geffrey Ian Galvez, FITS OPA Guimaras)
Reyes said that the merchandising of the products is also crucial, meaning that products should be properly placed or located in the display shelf of the grocery or department store in a way that they stand out in an attractive way in the display area.
Moreover, entrepreneurs should not produce anything if they don’t have the necessary and sufficient raw materials because they may not satisfy their clienteles and customers in the near term. For Reyes, one could only be successful if he has the passion of doing it.
Philfoodex, a non-stock non-profit organization of food manufacturers and exporters in the Philippines with more than 200 members to date, envisions being an internationally renowned Philippine food organization which adopts practices that contribute to environmentally sustainable businesses and enhance competitiveness in the global market to benefit members, employees, customers, stockholders and the community.
Philfoodex also seeks to work closely with industry partners and the government to sustain the country’s economic growth, monitor critical issues that affect Philippine Food sectors, and help government in its thrust on food security and abundance.
Philfoodex also helps the government in its thrust on food security and abundance. Their role is not only to sell the products but take care of the products and producers. Philfoodex calls this backward integration, in that they take care of farmers and producers because if there are no farmers who produce the products there will be no products to be exported.