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All set for Bishop Gainza Trade Fair 2023

By Tere Esmeralda - Medina

The Bishop Francisco Gainza Trade Fair (BFGTF), an annual fair of the Archdiocese of Caceres held during the Peňafrancia fiesta is set to happen from September 7 to 18, 2023. This was announced by Rev. Fr. Marcel Emmanuel DP. Real, project director.

This is the 13th BFGTF to be conducted since 2010, the celebration of tercentenary of the devotion to Our Lady of Peñafrancia. 2010 was also the year that the City of Naga and the Province of Camarines Sur were declared pilgrimage capitals of the Bicol Region through Proclamation No. 33 , s2010 by President Benigno S. Aquino III.

Caritas - Caceres (Naga), Inc., the Social Action Commission of the Archdiocese of Caceres and the Department of Trade and Industry Camarines Sur (DTI) are the lead organizers of the BFGTF.

In 2020 the organizers abided with the IATF restrictions due to the COVID 19 pandemic. In 2021, when physical gatherings were tolerated, a scaled-down fair was conducted. It was in 2022 that a full physical trade fair was conducted.

The BFGTF was conceived as a revival of the agricultural trade fairs which was first conducted in September 1857 by the Bishop of Caceres, Francisco Gainza, OP, who organized the numerous peddlers and devotees who conglomerated in the city during the September feast of Our Lady of Peňafrancia. The fair was fittingly revived during the tercentenary celebration in 2010.

In the present context, the BFGTF seeks to help alleviate poverty in the Archdiocesan jurisdiction and its environs through entrepreneurship and solidarity that promotes integral human development. The Bishop Francisco Gainza Trade Fair, as a feature of the Peñafrancia festivities, is in response to the need of Bicolano entrepreneurs for more opportunities for growth and sustainability.

This year, the BFGTF will feature local micro small and medium entrepreneurs (MSMEs) in the Bicol provinces as well small entrepreneurs from other parts of the country. Several local governments in the province of Camarines Sur have likewise expressed their support by featuring MSMEs from their municipalities.

The fair will feature handicrafts, processed foods, novelty items, furniture and other items crafted by local entrepreneurs.

Also to be featured are nightly cultural events, trainings, coverage of Traslacion and Fluvial processions. On September 18, Caceres Archbishop Rolando Tria Tirona shall conclude the 12-day fair with a Eucharistic celebration. It will be followed by a program with giving of awards and raffle prizes.

The Department of Trade and Industry (Camarines Sur) led by Provincial Director Jay Percival Ablan, the Department of Agriculture (DA) RFO-5’s Regional Executive Director Rodel P. Tornilla, the governor of Camarines Sur headed by Gov. Vicencio Miguel Villafuerte, the Camarines Sur Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CSCCI) headed by Ramon Simon L. Dy as major sponsors contribute to the synergy of the trade fair.

This year’s theme is “Kaiba si Maria asin si Cristo sa pagnegosyo asin pag asenso.”


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