▲ Jeju’s UNESCO-affiliated Global Geopark has spawned a series of agricultural corporations known as “Geo Farms.” Photo courtesy Jeju Sori
Jeju’s UNESCO-affiliated Global Geopark has spawned a series of agricultural corpora-tions known as “Geo Farms” which will aid local communities in producing and market-ing agricultural goods for tourists.
The corporations have been created in the villages of Gimnyeong-ri in Jeju City and Seongsan, Sagye, and Daepo-dong, all in Seogwipo City. Each Geo Farm will specialize in local agricultural and marine products such as onions, hijiki and garlic, and they should be on the shelves from April.
Jeju’s Geopark authorities have long sought to marketize the Geopark brand and it is hoped this UNESCO-endorsed project will boost local incomes, particularly as the products will be sold in small quantities targeting tourists, increasing profit margins.
Jeju Tourism Organization undertook a two-month education program in business start-ups and consultation in the partic-ipating villages, and they will also provide design expertise and processing support in the weeks ahead.
The Global Geopark designation differs from UNESCO World Natural Heritage in that it actively encourages sustainable economic activity to enable conservation and education.
Geo Farms seek to become hubs for agriculture, manufacturing and tourism on Jeju as the province seeks to catalyze senary industries, a term coined by economist Naraomi Imamura for a new industrial category that integrates primary, secondary and tertiary industries.
ⓒ Jeju Weekly 2009 (http://www.jejuweekly.com)
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