USSEC and ITF was invited to the City Hall of Bogor to meet with the new Mayor of Bogor, Dr. Bima Arya Sugiarto who recently officially inaugurated on April 7, 2014. Dadi Maskar, Prof Made Astawan and representative from KOPTI Bogor visited Mayor Bogor at his office on April 28, 2014.
During the meeting The Mayor got explanation about ITF program in improving tempe industry in Indonesia and especially in Bogor with the existence of Rumah Tempe Indonesia. It was also conveyed the planning of visit from the US Ambasador to Rumah Tempe Indonesia. Mayor Bogor is happy to host the Ambassador.
Mayor Bogor appreciated the effort of ITF in implementing the program and he committed to support and to work hand in hand with ITF and other stakeholders in improving tempe and tofu condition in Bogor area. He was also proud with the existence of Rumah Tempe Indonesia in Bogor as Center of Excellence for Tempe in Indonesia. He wish that RTI will become as the source of inspiration for other tempe producers to improve the way of production in accordance with food safety principles. He specifically appointed the Head of Small Medium Enterprise Department and some other relevant institution in Bogor to work closely with ITF and KOPTI Bogor to implement training program and developing new tempe and tofu pilot plants in order to improve the tempe and tofu industry in Bogor.
The visit of US Ambassador to Rumah Tempe Indonesia Bogor on April 29, 2014
The US Ambassador for Indonesia H.E. Mr. Robert O Blake visited the Rumah Tempe Indonesia Bogor on April 29, 2014. The visit was arranged in connection with the presentation of MD Registration Certificate from Head of BPOM to Rumah Tempe Indonesia and witness the signing of Memorandum of Understanding between Indonesian Soybean Association (AKINDO) and the Indonesian Tempe Forum. There was also Tempe Culinary Festival presented at the RTI during the event.
The Ambassador Blake arrived in the RTI at 9 AM as it scheduled. He was warm welcomed by Bogor Mayor, Dr. Bima Arya and Head of BPOM, Dr. Roy Sparringa. The event was started at 9.15 AM with a speech & presentation by Prof. Made Astawan, ITF Chairman. He explained the implementation of the ITF program with support and collaboration from various stakeholders in improving tempe industry condition in Indonesia including development of Rumah Tempe Indonesia as a center of excellence for tempe in Indonesia.
Second speech was delivered by by Dr. Bima Arya, Mayor of Bogor. He warm welcomed H.E Ambassador Blake and other VIP guests to Bogor. The Mayor expressed his proudness on the existence of RTI in his area and wished the other tempe produces learn from the RTI and apply the knowledge to improve the food safety and hygiene in the tempe production process.
The third speech was delivered by Head of BPOM, Dr. Roy Sparringa followed by the presentation of MD certificate issued by BPOM to RTI. MD certificate is food product registration number given for modern food processors. By having this MD, RTI is no longer village/home industry and its food safety level is considered on par with modern food manufacturers. A ceremony of sponsorship commitment from the AKINDO (Indonesian Soybean Importers Company Association) to ITF. AKINDO agrees to provide funding support to the ITF program in product development and researches activity.
Last session in the room was speech/remark from H.E. Ambassador Blake. The Ambassador expressed his gratitude with the work of ITF and other stakeholders in improving tempe industry conditions in Indonesia. He said that tempe is a good for agricultural trade. The Ambassador fully support the trade in soybeans as well as other agricultural goods, and he assured that the United States is a reliable source safe, quality food.
Just as important, U.S. soybeans bring real advantages to Indonesians. The same way that Indonesia provides the United States with high quality, low-cost food products like shrimp, cocoa, or coffee. U.S. soybeans ensure that Indonesians have access to high-quality foods at the lowest possible cost. Trade is especially important to the tempe industry, which is dominated by small holders. These food producers, who labor under demanding conditions, know that the value of their work is ensured by reliable access to high-quality, low-cost soybeans.
After the ceremony event in the room, Ambassador Blake and other VIP guests visited the production facilities at the RTI. After the visit, it was proceed to the tempe culinary festival when there were several tempe-based food products were showcased. Food show on various products of tempe culinary were presented in the area, and the Ambassador enjoyed them so much.