Political Economy of Agritourism in the Philippines

Agritourism (or Farm Tourism) has become not just a popular tourism enterprise, but also a sustainable rural development tool. Governments of developing countries, such as the Philippines, are banking on the income diversification potential of agritourism to uplift the lives of their impoverished small farmers. This research project critically interrogates how agritourism programs are emerging in the Global South, with attention to whether such development initiative delivers on its promise of “inclusive growth.”

I collaborate with critical tourism geographer Dr. Harng Luh Sin. Our findings point to the tendency of the agritourism program in the Philippines to favor landed elites and exclude small farmers who do not have sufficient access to economic, social, and cultural capitals. We also observe the tendency of tourism farms to emphasize “spectacle”, raising critical questions on food security.


Montefrio, M.J.F., and Sin, H.L. (2019). Elite governance of agritourism in the Philippines. Journal of Sustainable Tourism, 27(9), 1338-1354 (Link)

Montefrio, M.J.F., and Sin, H.L. Between food and spectacle: The complex reconfigurations of rural production in agritourism. Geoforum, 126, 383-393 (Link)

Published by Marvin Joseph Montefrio

Critical agrarian and food scholar specializing in political ecology, cultural politics, and STS.

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