Vida Valverde of Happy farmer sharing their experience at DATE 2018`s young frmers and bloggers meetup

At the close of last weeks Davao Agri Trade Expo (DATE) close to 100 bloggers, students farmers and social media influencers gathered for the culminating activity of the event, dubbed the Young farmers and bloggers meetup.

According to DATE 2018 Chair John Tria, the event brought together young farmers and agriculture based business people to share ideas and learn from various speakers such as Happy Farmer owned by Vida Valverde and Jun Ralota and Eyet and Emmanuel Belviz of Rosario`s delicacies.

The Davao born Valverde and Ralota, who decided to return to their hometown after years of working in Manila, shared how they founded Happy Farmer, an agriculture and food product retailer based in Davao City that sells pesticide free locally grown products.

" We started the business because we believe in healthy lifestyles, shich is why we began selling locally grown lemons," Valverde explained, saying further that all other products in trade followed as suppliers approached them to sell their products, like locally produced chocolates and organic brown rice.

Starting with meager capital of 80,000 pesos in 2014, happy farmer has four branches in Davao and hopes to expand.

The Belviz couple, also from Calinan Davao City, inherited a durian growing and candy making business from Emmanuel`s father.

According to Eyet, starting up the business had its difficulties but tgey eventually overcam them with faith and creativity.

"we didnt know what to do at first, but we attended seminars that helped us become more creative in developing products," she explained.

Rosario`s delicacies now produces chocolate tableya and candies in Davao and is set to start exposting long with other chocolate producers to Japan by next year.

The Davao Agritrade Expo is the annual flagship event of the Davao City Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Inc., Held last September 20-22, 2018, at SMX Convention Center, SM Lanang Premier, Lanang, Davao City. DATE is the largest and longest-running Trade expo in Southern Philippines geared towards the development of the agriculture industry.