The idea of putting up a food park started when this kind of business made a great success in parts of manila and Luzon. Food Park becomes so popular because many Filipinos love to explore different type of cuisine and very curious about some weird dishes being serve on the menu. Some food stalls actually serves food coming from the internal organ like intestine, heart, liver, penis, testicles and almost all parts including the blood is being made as food. Insect, frog, worms and many more variety is already on the menu. Food made out of this is usually not serve in fancy restaurant and food parks specially in urban areas due to some people see it as taboo or very unpleasant to eat, but generations now is different from before, people becomes very adventurous and wanted to try to eat those uncommon dishes that before only found in rural areas and Food minded people brought the dish to the urban area, introduce the menu and becomes a hit those food loving Filipino’s. Continental food are also available like western cuisine, Italian pasta, Japanese, Chinese, Mexican tacos and many more but majority being serve are the local delicacies.
Food parks now is commonly seen in many places mostly in the cities just like in Cagayan de Oro (nearby city from Salay), Cagayan now have two food parks namely “The Hive and The Tent”. These parks are holding around 30 food stalls that serves different kinds of food, varying from fancy deliciously looking food up to the exotic weird looking appetite destroyer dish, but some people still see it very delicious. Some food are Excellent in taste and some are poor but that already depends on the person eating. Food parks also serves variety of drinks like fruit shakes, fresh juice, and alcoholic beverage to Non-alcoholic beverages.
In Salay, we have the called El Progresso square but most people call it Lemon square because it has plenty of lemon trees around. The idea and nature of business is likely the same as other bigger food park business. As of now the area has four stalls but only two stalls are being occupied and operating. Before it is fully occupied but one tenant who rented two stalls stop doing business because of some personal issues, and I’m still hunting for new tenant for the two vacant stall.
The business started last April 28, 2018, the opening day started very great, lots of people dine in the park with their friends and family. Live band playing the music entertaining the customers, alcoholic beverage is also serve for those want to get drunk people, the day runs very smooth and everybody’s happy until the end of the day… days come by and businesses are running stronger and stable, many people visit to have lunch or dinner at the food park. Customers can choose between grilled chicken or pork, soup, fried food, snacks and many more. Variety of food and drinks are available to choose. Months later then the problem started, two of the tenant Greg and Angel are having issues about business, it started with just only because of the empty bottle of beer, they argue of who is really the owner of that and the problem becomes bigger and bigger and bigger as the days past. Close competition of business, price war erupted and the results are not really good. Their issues becomes too personal that they are already throwing bad comments to each other. Erwin the third tenant remain as neutral to both sides as I am also because we don’t want to get into trouble. Problem like this is very hard to handle specially it becomes personal but we’re now working to settle their conflict. Other problem we encounter is between the tenants and the neighbors, people surrounds the park complains about the noise of customers getting drunk with loud voices when talking, people sleeping being disturbed at night so the government give a solution that starting this year tenants will be no longer allowed to operate the business beyond 10 in the evening and no more alcoholic beverages and beers to be serve, it is a big loss of income but we have to follow what the government implemented for the goodness of the community and the people around.
Putting up business is a very nice idea specially if you can give opportunity to other people to start their own business also but in every field, in every aspect, there is always a challenge waiting ahead. Mostly good days come but sometimes bad days comes out also. Lesson I’ve learned to this business project is that it is very important to plan very well the idea before starting it, and identify what are the Pros and Cons of the business but it should not just limit until the business thing, consider also the Pros and Cons of the person doing/managing the business establishment because it is very hard to handle other persons personality, if people are very insensitive to others and always thinking of personal advantages and their selfishness, their will be always a conflict and bad thing will be the consequence and this is not really good for the business. If only that people doing attitude of being understanding, sharing helping each other and more positive actions, the result will be successful and everyone will be happy. This is why very important to emphasize and make clear to the business partners how important the positive attitude in business should be, profit is important but the relationship to each other is much more priority than money. Misunderstanding sometimes is hard to avoid but we have to be calm and avoid hitting below the belt, resolve the issue and make some solution to avoid further conflict with the same issue.
El Progresso now is on its difficult times because of this problems we encountered but we are positive that we can resolve the issue inside (Greg and Angel) the business and outside (the neighbors) and we are hoping that we can work peacefully throughout the years and we can help many more people who are interested to start business.