VIDEO: A Look Inside Laua-an

Let me introduce you to the sweetest municipality in all of Antique. Laua-an is a fourth class municipality in the province of Antique with a population of approximately 25,000 and the land of 40 barangays. A barangay is the equivalent of a small neighborhood. My barangay is Poblacion or Banwa, meaning the town proper.

Municipal Hall in Poblacion, Laua-an
Twelve of the barangays are costal and five inhabited by the Indigenous population. This agricultural town produces rice, peanuts, root crops such as kamote and gabi, and corn. However, Laua-an is most known for its production of Muscovado sugar. Today the traditional sugar mill technology is still used in select barangays. 
Traditional Sugar Mill

Testing the sugar for processing

Boiling Muscovado sugar, freshly poured 
The muscovado can be packaged as pure grain sugar or made into various sweets and treats. Here you will see a picture of butong-butong, literally translated as "pull-pull." You take the slightly cooled sugar and while it has a texture similar to taffy you pull and mold the sugar into shapes. The final product on the right was suppose to look like a pretzel but formed into E.T.s twin brother.


This is Ms. Gloria, a member of the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP). She makes homemade Bandi and other candies using muscovado sugar, peanuts and coconut. Bandi is a hard sugar candy embedded with peanuts. Very much like peanut brittle but made with muscovado sugar instead. It can be seen with a glass crystalized appearance or a cloudy glazed appearance.

Every Tuesday Ms. Gloria sets up her table and sells her products. When you become a frequent customer of small business owners like this one they are more inclined to give you an extra candy.

To celebrate the progress of the muscovado sugar industry, Laua-an holds the award-winning Pahinis festival. Pahinis translates to “clean” and the festival is surrounded around a ritual cleaning the sugar mills and tools and thank God for a good harvest of sugarcane. 

This year the Pahinis festival was celebrated with a week-long program that ended with a concert on the beach with a fireworks display to commemorate the centennial foundation of the municipality of Laua-an. Events from the festival included a, muscovado sack race, boxing tournament, beauty pageant, cooking contest and many other activities for everyone. Pictures from this week can be found on my facebook page but here is a video showing the opening ceremony.

**Warning** Graphic Content: The following images maybe disturbing to some viewers.

What is your town known for?

- The Natural Travelista