JFC and JGF renew commitment to help farmers in Nueva Ecija and Other Provinces
Last 28 April 2014, representatives from the Jollibee Food Corporation (JFC), institutional partners and guest of honor Senator Bam Aquino, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Trade, Commerce and Entrepreneurship visited farms in San Jose City, Nueva Ecija to express their commitment to help uplift the lives of farmers.
Through the help of the Farmer Entrepreneurship Program (FEP), a partnership project of the Jollibee Group Foundation (JGF), Catholic Relief Services (CRS) and National Livelihood Development Corporation (NLDC), opportunities are opened up to small-scale farmer groups for them to supply their produce like chili peppers and onions directly to institutional buyers, such as fast food restaurants, supermarkets and food processors.
JFC sources white onions from KALASAG for the burger patties of Jollibee. Chowking, a subsidiary of JFC serving Chinese fast food, has sourced chili peppers from the KALASAG farmers of San Jose since 2011 for use in their chili oil. Splash Foods Corporation (SFC), which manufactures food products like sauces, preserves, ready-to-eat canned meals and other condiments also sources onions, chilli pepper, garlic and gabi leaves from FEP farmers.
KALASAG is ably assisted by Mayor Marivic Belena and the local government unit (LGU) of San Jose City, who are active co-implementers of FEP in their site.
Sen. Aquino stressed the importance of having inclusive supply chains to help increase the income of smallholder farmers and to help fight poverty in the Philippines. He underscored the need to replicate the San Jose FEP model in other parts of the country.
“Agriculture is one of the backbone industries of the country. It is really the dream for the program to help small-scale farmers not only to improve their livelihood but to participate in nation-building,” said JGF President M’ Grace Tan Caktiong. FEP has partnered with more than 40 local institutions to develop over 900 farmers from 15 provinces nationwide.