Tobacco - the prime product of the Ilocos region - takes centerstage in a festival in Candon City in Ilocos Sur, ABS-CBN Regional Network Group reported Friday.
One of the highlights of the festival was the 104-meter long tobacco stick, which was made by 20 people and used up almost 300 kilos of tobacco leaves.
The said tobacco stick, which is said to be the longest in the country, will be highlighted in a parade on Monday.
While the tobacco stick was being made, senior citizens of Candon took part in a different kind of contest.
Fastest meter-long cigar-making and lighting
Elderly residents of this city competed on who could wrap a meter-long tobacco stick and light it up in the fastest time possible.
Among the participants was 90-year-old Lola Rosa Diw-anan, who said she will do everything to win.
During the competition, Diw-anan's group was the first to roll up a meter-long stick of tobacco. However, their team was outsmarted by the team of Lola Magdalena Justo, who were able to light up their tobacco stick faster.
Source of livelihood and revenue
The festival aims to highlight the tobacco industry of Candon, said Mayor Allen Singson.
"This proves that tobacco farming is the major source of livelihood in our city," Singson said.
Candon produces 11 million kilos of tobacco annually which is the biggest in the whole region.
The annual P16-million-peso tobacco excise tax contributes to the city's economic growth. Dhobie de Guzman, ABS-CBN Regional Network Group