CITEM launches digital initiatives to boost PH Food industry

The Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM) has announced the launch of its initiative to promote the local food industry.

In a recent digital promotions meeting attended by representatives from its partner exhibitors, buyers, government agencies, embassies and media, CITEM executive director Pauline Suaco-Juan shared that these digital-based endeavors are part of the CITEM’s drive to provide a unique and comprehensive trade show experience for all of its stakeholders.

“Even before the pandemic started affecting businesses and events the world over, CITEM has already begun working on its digitalization initiatives in an effort to go where our audience is headed,” says Suaco-Juan. “With digital marketing and e-commerce disrupting the trade industry, one must be able to adapt to the new online processes, systems and methods that are the future of this industry.”

CITEM’s digital initiatives aim to support micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) keep up with their global competitors and maximize their resources in the new business environment, through the power of digital and content marketing.

Food entrepreneurs among CITEM’s registered exhibitors, for example, can now easily connect with, and promote their products to more buyers around the world through their digital storefronts and online catalogs housed in the IFEX Connect website (ifexconnect.com).

CITEM Digital Initiatives

Their online visibility will also be supplemented by hybrid events (partly onsite and partly online) as well as fully digital trade events which are promoted through communications in various online channels to extend the reach and discoverability of exhibitors beyond that of a typical onsite trade show.

Content in the form of social media posts, press releases, newsletters, event brochures and look books, among others, will also be created under the Food Philippines brand (foodphilippines.com), to help promote the local food industry by highlighting the country’s food heritage, recipes, feature stories, products, ingredients and culinary talents while linking back to the exhibitors’ digital storefronts.

To help exhibitors maximize the potential of IFEXConnect.com, CITEM is also running content amelioration programs to assist MSME’s in the production of product photos and brand copies meant to optimize both the user experience and their searchability online. This program started with a pilot batch of 100 MSMEs with top food stylist Chichi Tullao and food photographer Justin de Jesus helping in the production.

For all these efforts, CITEM enlisted the expertise of premier storytellers in the food industry: Joey Ong, advertising veteran and Managing Director/Executive Creative Director of Dojo as Chief Storyteller, and Angelo Comsti, chef, food writer, and author of the bestselling cookbooks, From our Table to Yours and Also Filipino, as Editor-in-Chief of the two platforms.

“CITEM, works hand in hand with these food luminaries along with ODV Creative who offered strategic support for content production and event management, and UM Philippines for web development. We are proud to have built a homegrown website and we look forward to building a community that will let the world savor the best of Philippine food,” added Suaco-Juan.

Food companies and buyers are encouraged to register and be the first to experience the shift to digital. Application for the initial batch of exhibitors is until August 25, 2021.

Click here to register as an Exhibitor and here to register as a Buyer.

CITEM Digital Initiatives

These digital initiatives will be managed with the aim of creating profitable relationships between businesses and their customers using a customer relationship management system (CRM) which MSMEs can now benefit from by virtue of being registered exhibitors of CITEM.

MSMEs can even link their e-commerce platforms (such as their online stores in Lazada, Shopee or Alibaba) to their digital storefronts in IFEX to facilitate seamless sales transactions and fulfillment.

Another support that CITEM extends to food MSMEs is its product innovation and development program, which is now known as NxtFoodPH. It is a year-long comprehensive and integrated assistance for the development and promotion of Philippine food products to adapt to changing consumer demands.

About CITEM

The Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM) is the export promotion arm of the Philippine Department of Trade and Industry (DTI).

CITEM is committed to developing, nurturing, and promoting globally-competitive small and medium enterprises (SMEs), exporters, designers, and manufacturers by implementing an Integrated Approach to Export Marketing in partnership with other government and private entities.

For three decades, CITEM has established the country’s image as the premier destination for quality export products and services. It continues to set the highest standards of creativity, excellence and innovation to achieve export competitiveness in the international market.

3 reasons to sate your sweet cravings with a Cheesecake Jar from Chi’s Cake

For many of us dessert lovers, biting into a decadent cheesecake is sublime pleasure.

The rich creaminess and the sweet-tart flavor dynamic of the filling, the buttery taste of its graham cracker crust and the flavor accents added by its toppings are enough to get us hooked!

Sometimes, though, we get a craving for cheesecake but buying an entire cake might be more than what our refrigerator or tummy can accommodate.

The perfect solution for those instances?

A cheesecake jar from Chi’s Cake!

Chi’s Cake

This online bakeshop, run by former It business analyst turned full-time mom Siri Andres, had its start by offering uniquely flavored no-bake cheesecakes – as whole cakes or in cups – which have been reviewed as not being too sweet (perfect for those who get overwhelmed too much sweetness in their desserts).

During the quarantine, it introduced a new way to enjoy its sweet creations: in jars!

Chi’s Cake

Chi’s Cake

Here are three reasons why a Chi’s Cake cheesecake jar may just be your kind of sweet treat.

1. It introduces you to new flavors.

Chi’s Cake’s cheesecakes are no run-of-the-mill desserts. These are handcrafted creations that come in unusual variants. Luckily, these variants are also available as handy cheesecake jars.

The Carrot Cinnamon Cheesecake, for example, is Chi’s Cake’s claim to fame. A creamy, melt in your mouth carrot-infused cheesecake on a bed of buttery crust and topped with caramelized walnuts, this confection is what started the business.

Chi’s Cake

Chi’s Cake

The Pecan Pie Cheesecake, on the other hand, is a to-die-for dessert which consist of a crust made with crushed digestive biscuits and a delectable cream filling topped with candied pecans.

Chi’s Cake

Chi’s Cake

Are you craving for a taste right about now?

2. It is sized just right for you.

If you find a whole 9-inch cheesecake too overwhelming (for your ref space or your tummy), then a cheesecake jar fits the bill quite nicely.

Chi’s Cake

At 220 grams, it is just enough to sate your craving, perfect for a quick sweet snack time or for munching on during a Netflix binge.

3. It’s perfect for e-parties.

Zoom parties have taken the place of real-life gatherings due to the pandemic. To have a real party feel, it’s best for everyone to partake of the same food, right?

PizzaX

Chi’s Cake

Why not send everyone a cheesecake jar? And then wait for the compliments to come in.

To order your Chi’s Cake cheesecake jars, fill up this order form. Chi’s Cake delivers within Metro Manila, Pampanga, Bulacan, Rizal, Laguna and Cavite (delivery fee to be shouldered by the buyer). Payments via GCash and Metrobank are accepted.

Chi’s Cake

Check out my blog posts on other small enterprises and startups in the food business:

Home-baked goodies worth the calories… Baked by Rina

Most of my friends already know my mantra when it comes to food: in Tagalog, it goes – “nasasayang lang ang calories pag hindi ka nasarapan.”

The reasoning behind this is that if I have to spend an extra thirty minutes to an hour on the treadmill just to burn off those calories I consumed anyway, the food better be worth it. (Truth be told: I haven’t been on the treadmill as often as I should but the principle still applies.)

Baked by Rina

During a recent Zoom party with former officemates, I won a box of empanadas from online bakeshop Baked by Rina.

Rina is one of my former bosses. Beneath the fierce, tough love and go-getter exterior she displayed in the workplace, my teammates and I all knew she’s a softie at heart.

That softer side comes to the surface when she brings to the office some items she baked for us to share.

Baked by Rina

Fast forward a few years and Rina has since moved forward to more creative pursuits: among them are the crafting of preserved flower arrangements for Stories & Blossoms and the creation of goodies baked with love for Baked by Rina.

This venture grew out of the ever-increasing demand for Rina’s baked treats, first within her circle of friends, then on to their friends until she decided to share her creations to a wider network of foodies through her online store. Her offerings include the classic desserts often requested by her family and friends during special occasions or when they have a particular craving.

Baked by Rina

Last weekend, to the fam’s utter delight, my empanadas arrived accompanied by other treats from Baked by Rina. These were all certified by the Jellybeans family as well worth the calories.

Check out these baked goodies:

Baked Empanadas (Php550/box). Savory chicken and chicken asado filling wrapped in a flaky crust and baked to a beautiful golden brown. A hit with Hubby for his midnight snacking.

Baked by Rina

Baked by Rina

Baked by Rina

Baked by Rina

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies (Php250/tub). Sweet chewy nibbles of oatmeal cookies studded with fruity raisins.

Baked by Rina

Chocolate Chip Cookies (Php325/tub). Little bites of classic chocolate chip cookies best enjoyed when bitten into after dunking in full cream milk. My son’s favorite since he had his first taste of it a year ago and its appeal to him has not waned!

Baked by Rina

Baked by Rina

Baked by Rina

Banana Loaf with Walnuts and Raisins (Php350). A fragrant and moist banana loaf studded with chopped walnuts and raisins. My daughter loved its taste and texture!

Baked by Rina

Baked by Rina

Baked by Rina

Dutch Apple Pie (Php1,400). This is my absolute favorite kind of apple pie: a sweetly spiced apple filling on top of a flaky crust and topped with a slightly crunchy and buttery streusel. It’s great on its own but it’s best enjoyed hot and topped with vanilla ice cream.

Baked by Rina

Baked by Rina

Baked by Rina

Baked by Rina

Baked by Rina

With each bite of bite of these sweet treats Baked by Rina, you know these are worth all the calories.

Baked by Rina

So give yourself and your fam a treat and order some baked goodies today!

Baked by Rina

Check out Baked by Rina on Facebook to see the complete list of available goodies. To order, send a message via Facebook Messenger or call +63 917 5014934 at least two days before delivery date. Payments via Metrobank or BPI bank transfers and via GCash are accepted. Baked by Rina delivers from Quezon City to anywhere in the metro and nearby cities via Grab, Lalamove and Mr. Speedy (delivery fee charged to buyer).

Disclosure: Product samples were provided to facilitate this feature article.

Check out my blog posts on other small enterprises and startups in the food business:

#LookToTheEast for delectable and affordable Sushi Bake

Easterners, we don’t have to get left behind when it comes to the latest quarantine food trend: the Sushi Bake.

YG Delectables

YG Delectables

Thanks to new online seller in the Rizal area, Y&G Delectables, we can satisfy our curiosity and craving for this trending food item easily and quite cheaply, too!

YG Delectables

YG Delectables

Despite having been written about as early as 2011, the sushi bake has re-emerged as the must-taste dish of the season. While its exact origins aren’t known, some have theorized that it may have been influenced by Hawaiian cuisine such as the poke bowls with cooked meat and the Spam Musubi.

Essentially, it is sushi deconstructed as a casserole: steamed rice forms the bottom layer which is then topped with the elements we normally expect from a sushi roll such as kani, ebiko and furikake. After baking the sushi casserole in the oven, spoonfuls are scooped out and placed in small nori squares, ready for eating.

YG Delectables

YG Delectables

While there are many interpretations of this dish being offered all over the metro, they tend to be quite pricy or too distant from us Easterners to find the cost of delivery to our homes practical.

Well that limitation ends now with Y&G Delectables’ Sushi Bake. This no-frills take on the dish is well-suited for those who like their kani baked sushi cheesy, strongly flavored with a little spicy kick due to the use of sriracha.

YG Delectables

YG Delectables

YG Delectables

YG Delectables

Cainta-based Y&G Delectables takes its name from the teenage twins Yel and Gel who decided to offer their Ate’s sushi bake in their area as a way to pass the time (and earn some money) while stuck at home. (And I’m all for youngsters learning the value of making a living early on.)

YG Delectables

YG Delectables

Y&G Delectables’ sushi bake come in three tummy-filling sizes:

  • Solo with 1 free nori pack: Php250
  • Sharing with 2 free nori packs: Php350
  • Family (available upon request); Php550

So. Easterners, the next time you’re feeling peckish and looking for a trendy snack, or want to surprise your old folks with today’s hottest food trend, grab a tray of Y&G Delectables’ Sushi Bake and support a local business while you’re at it.

YG Delectables

YG Delectables

To order, text +63 975 0375035 or send a message via Instagram. Payments via BDO, BPI or GCash are accepted. Delivery via Grab, Lalamove or Angkas to be shouldered by buyer.

Disclosure: Product samples were provided to facilitate an honest review.

Check out my blog posts on other small enterprises and startups in the food business:

Leave the cooking up to ALPHA’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Sure, momshies, we might have just a wee bit more free time nowadays. It’s been three-and-a-half months since our lives were upended by the pandemic and many of us found ourselves stuck at home. Some even discovered a talent for cooking as I have, cooking up a storm for the fam’s meals.

But cooking up a storm for every meal can be tiring, right?

I sometimes wish that I can leave the whole menu planning and food preparation to someone else.

Fortunately, I can have the folks over at ALPHA’s Kitchen Home Delivery take care of all of that for me.

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

The dish on this new entrant in the local food business is that it began as the home service massage company ALPHA Massage & Wellness Therapy.

With their original business severely affected by the quarantines and rules on physical distancing arising from the pandemic, the owners landed upon a great way to pivot for the New Normal: their massage therapists turned to cooking!

Curious on what delicious delights they came up with? Well, here’s a sampling:

Lasagna. Al dente lasagna noodles layered with beefy, slightly herby tomato sauce and thick cheesy bechamel. A hit with my little boy!

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Crispy Bagnet Kare Kare. Crrrrrrunchy oven-baked bagnet pieces and crisp veggies in a rich peanut sauce.

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Bicol Express. Tender pork cubes cooked in creamy coconut milk and chilis make for a hearty viand with a bit of a kick.

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Spicy Salmon Pesto. Flavorful salmon flakes tossed in pesto sauce along with spaghetti noodles. A little too spicy for me but would appeal to those who like their pasta hawt!

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Leche Flan. The classic Pinoy version of creme caramel, this is creamy, milky-sweet and smooth on the tongue.

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Maja Blanca. The traditional coconut pudding topped with latik (caramelized coconut creme).

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

These delish dishes come in affordable yet hearty servings – medium (serves two to three people), family (serves six to seven people) and party (serves twelve to fifteen) – that will surely satisfy hungry tummies!

Chicken or Pork Dishes:

  • Medium: Php299
  • Family: Php699
  • Party: Php1,499

Beef or Seafood:

  • Medium: Php349
  • Family: Php799
  • Party: Php1,799

Dessert:

  • Medium: Php249
  • Family: Php499
  • Party: Php999

You can also try the Famous Bundle – five medium tubs – for just Php999.

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

Alpha’s Kitchen Home Delivery

To have these tasty viands delivered right to your doorstep, send your name, address, contact number and food orders to Alpha Kitchen Home Delivery on Facebook or Instagram, or call +63 906 5955707 (delivery costs shouldered by buyer). Payments via cash on delivery, GCash or online bank transfer are accepted.

So momshies, now you know how you can whip up a satisfying meal for the fam without having to slave all day in the kitchen!

Disclosure: Product samples were provided to facilitate an honest review.

Check out my blog posts on other small enterprises and startups in the food business:

Infinite possibilities with Legande, Inc.

Recent events have sent the world reeling and businesses are at a standstill. In Legande, we value the well-being of our employees and customers but we also know that our products are essential in day to day living. This is why we have come up with a new way of doing things; one that is adaptable to current events but still allows us to cater to the demands and needs of the business.

Legande has an entrepreneurship program catered to help you succeed from the comfort of your home. It is a step by step program that maximizes your strength and preferences. The Legande Entrepreneurship Acceleration Program aka LEAP is one of the most rewarding and it has easy to follow steps that combine sustainable but unlimited income opportunities. It can also pay according to your preference, whether it be bi-monthly, monthly, or annually.

Legande Inc

There are 10 ways to earn with Legande. The details can be found here.

We envision you to be an active entrepreneur who learns, earns, and reaps the perks and benefits as you climb the zenith of success. We will be there with you every step of the way.

Legande believes that we can grow better by helping others. Here, we make sure that while we grow the business, we also grow the people around us so they can earn as well.

Legande Inc

We don’t know when the COVID-19 pandemic will end but what we do know is that there are ways we can still earn a living while staying safe. Legande Inc. is one with everyone in this endeavor and we hope that with this membership program, we can help you provide for your family.

Here at Legande, we talk about infinite possibilities and we walk the talk.

You can visit www.Legánde.com or visit them (when the Enforced Community Quarantine is over) at Suite 406, West Tower, Philippine Stock Exchange Center, Ortigas Center, Barangay San Antonio, Pasig City, Metro Manila, Philippines, 1605. You can also check their Facebook Page to send them a message.

Images and details provided by Legande, Inc. in a recent press release.

Open a box of happiness with cinnamon rolls from Rolls.PH

Did you know that cinnamon rolls originated from Sweden where it is called kanelbulle (“cinnamon bun”)? This Swedish pastry is an offshoot of the British Chelsea bun (a currant bun), the German schnecken (rolls made with sugar and currants), and other butter-infused yeast dough pastries that became popular in Northern Europe in the mid-1700s.

The cinnamon roll is usually enjoyed by the Swedish during fika, the time when they take a break from their day to sit down with friends and family to share some baked goods and coffee.

Rolls.PH

And who wouldn’t want these rolls during coffee break, hmm? The smell of the cinnamon wafting from the warm bun would surely tease your nose into lingering over a few cups of coffee as you ruminate over your day.

The Chelsea bun and the schnecken made their way across the Atlantic in the 1800s through English and German immigrants and found themselves in the New World, particularly in the cultural melting pot of Philadelphia where the size and make-up of the Chelsea bun are combined with the fillings of the schnecken roll, resulting in a large, caramelized cinnamon roll.

Today, cinnamon rolls are practically staples in coffee shops, oftentimes topped with a cream cheese icing that adds even more richness to the pastry.

Rolls.PH

Rolls.PH

Rolls.PH

But, guess what: you can enjoy it at home, at your workplace or wherever you are thanks to Rolls.ph.

This online business is the brainchild of two Immaculate Concepcion Academy students who discovered a way to produce the perfect homemade cinnamon rolls – soft, moist and not too sweet.

These rolls are all made by hand using premium ingredients and are priced at:

  • Single: Php60
  • Box of 6: Php350
  • Box of 12: Php600

These buns are ideal as coffee break treats, holiday gifts for friends and family or as one’s potluck contribution to family gatherings.

Plus, your purchase of these buns also help build a learning center in Mindoro as well as fund environmental cleanup groups.

So wouldn’t you want to get yourself or someone special a box (or two… or more :-)) of these yummy cinnamon rolls for the holidays?

Rolls.PH

Rolls.PH

You can order from Rolls.ph through the following:

  • Call +63 917 5350923
  • Email officialrolls.ph@­gmail.com
  • Send a private message via Facebook or Instagram

Disclosure: A product sample was provided to me to facilitate an honest review.

Check out my blog posts on other small enterprises and startups in the food business: