Micro, small and medium enterprises are not only the backbone of the Philippine economy; they also bring growth to the communities where they are located. For these small businesses and the local communities to thrive and continually adapt, it is crucial for them to receive support and patronage.
In its commitment to support and empower Filipino micro-entrepreneurs, Cebu-based retailer Metro Retail Stores Group, Inc. (MRSGI) has strengthened its existing corporate social responsibility (CSR) partnership with adlai producer Kiboa Ridge Farms, and moringa producer GreenEarth Heritage Foundation.
Through this partnership, MRSGI provides these micro-entrepreneurs access to a wider market by making their products available in select Metro branches.
Kiboa Ridge Farms takes its name from kibuwa, their chosen variety of adlai. The company developed their products in collaboration with the Northern Mindanao Integrated Agricultural Research Center (DA-NOMIARC).
“Our adlai is grown in Impasugong, Bukidnon, and harvested by more than 40 small-scale farmers and farm workers, whom we provide with high-quality seeds, technical assistance, and market access,” said Patricia de Villa, general manager of Kiboa Ridge Farms. “Cultivating adlai boosts farmers’ income, and allows us to deliver safe and nutritious food to consumers.”
GreenEarth Heritage Foundation, on the other hand, maintains a sustainable farm and reforestation site at the foothills of the Sierra Madre in San Miguel, Bulacan.
“We envision GreenEarth to be a model eco-community that enables a brighter future for our family beneficiaries,” said Mylene Matti, MD, GreenEarth Heritage Foundation Founder and Executive Director. One hundred percent of proceeds from the sale of their moringa tea supports their communities.
The retail company recently rolled out the products of Kiboa and GreenEarth in Metro Market! Market!, Metro Alabang, Metro Feliz, and Metro Ayala Center Cebu; another initiative towards Metro’s mission of providing means for consumers to make choices that benefit communities in need.
“We are delighted to have CSR partners who share the same values, and the vision of caring and creating a positive impact in Filipino communities,” says Anna Marie Periquet, vice president for Corporate Affairs of MRSGI.
“Having a retail giant like MRSGI spearhead this initiative is a testament to their commitment to uplifting lives through increased opportunities in education and livelihood, and we are truly proud to be part of One Metro Community,” said de Villa.
Matti added, “We are in need to expand our reach every day to be able to sell what our farming families produce under Fair Trade conditions. The partnership with MRSGI is an answered prayer in achieving our goals, since having a presence in MRSGI stores supports our vision for the communities we support.”
Kiboa Ridge Farms and GreenEarth Heritage Foundation are also some of the CSR partners and beneficiaries of MRSGI’s Virtual Metro Retail Community Bazaar, which lasted until the end of December.
“Each item we stock is a symbol of hope, passed on from the farmers and producers, down to our frontliners at the stores, and to our loyal customers. Together, we are meeting the challenges brought on by these difficult times as One Metro Family,” says Manuel Alberto, president and chief operating officer of MRSGI.