‘Tienda ni Gob’ promotes Ilocanos entrepreneurial spirit

LAOAG CITY — Fifty-year-old Helen Agullana from Pagudpud always looks forward to an agriculture and trade fair exhibit being held in this city, to showcase some of her shell crafts and souvenir items.

Dubbed as “Tienda ni Gob,” this annual trade fair and exhibit invites all interested small business entrepreneurs from the 21 municipalities and two cities here to display their products in time for the weeklong celebration of Ilocos Norte’s founding anniversary and Laoag’s Pamulinawen Festival this February.

As a three-time participant, Agullana said the exhibit, located at the Dap-ayan Center within a prime commercial area at the heart of the city, is a big help to local entrepreneurs like her.

“The ‘Tienda ni Gob’ is a big help to us, especially to those who don’t have stable, everyday jobs, like me,” said Agullana, citing the location where they set up their booths is very accessible to tourists and visitors.

Other exhibitors said they are also excited to participate in the Laoag trade fair for they have a better chance to sell their products in the thickly populated city while learning from other exhibitors ways of packaging their products.

For buyers, they also prefer to shop in one place where everything is available, ranging from freshly picked vegetables, processed meat products and other native and quality items unique to a municipality or city.

To help small and medium entrepreneurs promote their products, the provincial government organizes trade fairs during special events. It also awards winners for the “best booth” competition to encourage better presentation of local products.

This year, the municipality of Banna won in the best booth competition. Banna highlighted its best selling blend of rice coffee, otap, camote chips and vinegar. Also adjudged the best booth, next to Banna, is Bangui and Badoc, respectively.

“Tienda ni Gob” is in support to the provincial government’s vision to transform the province into a “livable, sustainable and resilient home” for Ilocanos. PNA-northboundasia.com