Friends of AANI at Horti 2014
A special commercial section has been set aside at the forthcoming Horticulture 2014, the big horticultural expo that is being staged by the Philippine Horticultural Society headed by Dorie S. Bernabe.
The event will be from January 24 to February 3 at the Tropical Garden at the Quezon Memorial Circle in Quezon City.
The Friends of AANI consisting of stallholders at the FTI and many others who are into various types of farming will be making available their fresh produce, processed items, planting materials and other inputs in farming.
Horticulture 2014 is being focused on agritourism, wellness and livelihood. Ideas on money-making opportunities in farming, gardening, processing of food and wellness products, will be showcased.
Dorie Bernabe is particularly inviting OFWs and their relatives to the show so they can pick up ideas in which they can invest their earnings. They can establish their own projects in the country so they don’t have to leave their families anymore.
At the AANI commercial section, Ernesto Abalos who might as well be called the “Paraoakan King,” will be launching his All-White Paraoakan chicken which is a product of judicious, continuous selection. This new strain has the usual traits of the ordinary Paraoakan – long legs, long neck, big head and bigger body than the other strains of native chickens. There is another desirable trait of the All-White Paraoakan. Abalos has observed that it is more easily domesticated than its colored counterpart. The black Paraoakan, according to Abalos, is more flighty.
At the AANI commercial section, the Dragon Fruit Lady of Ilocos Norte, Edita Dacuycuy, will be showcasing her various products from different parts of the dragon fruit plant. The dragon fruit, she says, might as well be called the Vine of Life in the same manner that the coconut is dubbed the Tree of Life.
Edita has produced an array of products from the fruit of the dragon fruit and plant parts. These include sweet wine, vinegar, ice cream, shanghai lumpia from flowers, noodles and others. She has planted 10 hectares to this fruit-bearing cactus and plans to expand some more.
THE AANI STORY — The Agri-Aqua Network International (AANI) is a modest company put up initially to conduct seminars on farming, gardening, aquaculture and related undertakings. It was meant to disseminate useful agricultural technologies that could help hobbyists as well as commercial entrepreneurs in agriculture and fisheries.
SEMINARS — The seminars immediately attracted many attendees because there have been a lot of people who were hungry for practical technologies that work. The seminars that started in 1996 include such topics as tilapia farming, poultry production, mango production, hydroponics, ornamental nursery production, pig farming, mahogany culture, hito culture and so many other topics.
WEEKEND MARKET — The weekend market was the next venture of AANI. This started with the Sunday Market at the Sidcor compound in Cubao, Quezon City. This was an instant success. So many people went to the half-day Sunday Market and ordinary farmers and other producers brought their merchandise to the Sidcor.
Soon, Dr. Elena Binay, then mayor of Makati, invited AANI to put up its version of Weekend Market in Makati. And this was at the Magallanes business center. It was also very successful as customers flocked to the place every Saturday and Sunday.
Because the Magallanes property was needed by the owners, AANI transferred its weekend market to the TESDA compound. It stayed for two years because FTI had invited AANI to transfer its operation there where it is bigger.
Up to this day, the AANI has its thriving weekend market at the FTI. More than 250 stallholders are making a decent livelihood selling their fresh and processed farm produce. The place has now included a dry goods section.
SEAFOODS — There is a wide variety of freshwater as well as marine seafoods at the AANI at FTI. These include tilapia, bangus, shrimps, crabs, seaweeds, imported salmon, tuna and many more.
FRUITS & VEGGIES — Then there are the fruits and vegetables. Practically all the Philippine fruits in season are available, including mango, guyabano, santol, guava, pummelo and other citrus varieties.
Vegetables include the highland veggies like heading lettuce, cabbage, Chinese cabbage, snap beans, radish, carrot and more. The lowland vegetables include practically all the pinakbet types.
ORNAMENTAL PLANTS — If you are an ornamental plant gardener, you will find there your favorite ornamentals including palms, philodendrons, aglaonemas, dieffenbachias, colorful foliage types, landscaping materials, ground covers and many more.
FARM TOURS — AANI has also gone into farm tours. It has conducted tours to organic farms like the Costales Farm, the Kahariam Farm in Lipa City, the organic farm of Fred Pascua in Cavite, the CRTD Farm in Calauan, Laguna, the Mercado Fish Farm in Bulacan, the Alaminos Goat Farm in Laguna, and many others.
BACK TO HORTI 2014 — Horticulture 2014 has a special highlight. This is the two-day Horticulture Conference where two foreign experts have been invited to discuss the latest production technologies in horticulture.
The two-day event will be held on January 24 and 25 at the conference hall of the Bureau of Soils and Water Management on Visayas Avenue.
Dr. Surawit Wannakrairoj of Kasetsart University in Bangkok and Dr. Teresita Amore of the University of Hawaii are the main speakers at the conference.
Of course there is also a battery of local experts who will share their know-how at the conference. One of them is Ronald Costales who is a most successful organic farm operator. His farm in Majayjay, Laguna, has been accredited as a tourist destination by the Department of Tourism.