Guimaras now solely owns the title of producing the sweetest mangoes following the conferment of the certificate of geographical indication (GI) registration by the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL).

The certificate was awarded to the Guimaras Mango Growers and Producers Development Cooperative during the National Geographical Indications Forum held in Makati City from May 22 to 23.

Provincial Economic Development (PED) Officer Francisco E. Gentoral said it took years before the province was able the get the registration because they had to document starting from production, determining the number of days to harvest to maintain the sweetness, testing the sweetness level and hot water treatment processes.

“It’s geographic, which means it comes from Guimaras. It means that other areas claiming as Guimaras mangoes can be questioned by the province,” he said.

The patent, he said, showed the value of the product and not just about the sweetness of the mango but also the processes that it underwent and the quality it has to maintain.

In the certificate of GI registration signed by Bureau of Trademarks Director Jesus Antonio Z. Roz, it states that the Guimaras mango is a “typical carabao variety mango which is shaped like an ellipsoid, with a rounded crown and an oblong end”.

It is green when unripe but changes into a yellow-orange to yellow as it ripens.

It has a meaty, smooth, firm, juicy, and non-fibrous flesh and the total blemishes found on the skin shall not exceed 10 percent of the total fruit surface, the certificate said.

“Guimaras mango is also known as the ‘sweetest mango’ due to the sweetness which ranges from 16-degree Brix and higher. It also has ‘marabo’ texture, a Guimarasnon word meaning a distinct blend of crunchiness, sweetness, and sourness,” it added.

The quality and characteristics of Guimaras mango are attributed to the topography of the province which varies from flat to steeply sloping; the elevation of the island is highly suitable for growing carabao mangoes, it added.

Gentoral said they will now be working on a QR code that will be attached to the product, including boxes for identification purposes.

“The province has an ordinance for that, which we need to revise and be executed well,” he added.

Geographical Indication is an initiative of IPOPHL to promote the effective use of intellectual property rights, particularly, GI, as a strategic business tool to further enhance the competitive advantage of the country’s indigenous and distinctive products, said the press statement from the Guimaras information office on Thursday.

Joining Gentoral in receiving the certificate were Senior Agriculturist and Provincial Mango Focal Person Joegin Galvez, Guimaras Mango Growers and Producers Development Cooperative Felipe Gamarcha, and former PEDO Elena V. Quezon.PNA