Int'l scientist urges PH biz to invest in Earth-friendly tourism

Published: July 20, 2019 02:22pm | Puerto Princesa City


PUERTO PRINCESA CITY—An international environmental expert on Wednesday called on world environment policymakers, scientists and the business sector to find ways to develop business plans that would help promote biodiversity and sustainability. Dr. Antonio de Abreu, a biologist from Portugal said investment in tourism that help promote biodiversity should be encouraged.

Dr. Antonio de Abreu, an environment expert of Unesco's Man and Biosphere (MAB) Programme in Portugal speaks before the International Conference on Biosphere and Sustainability in Puerto Princesa City, Palawan on July 24. The confab which runs until July 26 gathers over 100 scientists, experts, educators and business leaders all over the world and talks about how to preserve and sustain the planet's life sphere.(Photos by Dianne Kathryn Datu)

"Don't be afraid of investment (on biodiversity). Investment is good (when it helps develop and sustain biodiversity)," Abreu said in a speech during the International Conference on Biosphere and Sustainability held here which was participated by Yamang Bukid Farm-Palawan and more than 120 other local and international entities from the scientific, academic, business and government sectors. Abreu underscored the challenge to invest in and develop a business plan "that is economically sustainable and socially acceptable."
"That is the only way to succeed in this limited planet," said Abreu, a specialist in Unesco's Man and Biosphere (MAB) Reserves in Lisbon.

The Portuguese expert noted the Philippines' unique place in biodiversity conservation as the country is home to three Unesco-recognized Biosphere Reserves (BRs) located in Palawan, Puerto Galera and Albay. He said these biodiversity-rich regions are good in tourism owing to their natural and cultural riches.

A honeybee collects nectar on a flower at the Yamang Bukid Farm. The farm tourism destination in Puerto Princesa City's Bacungan village is home to different species of flora and fauna and shows the farm's rich biodiversity.
(Photos by Dianne Kathryn Datu)

The scientist emphasized the need for stakeholders to tap not only the areas' natural beauty which are limited but also utilize the richness of its social and cultural aspects. "This is about our commitment in increasing social and natural resilience as well as promoting behavioral changes," he said, citing as example BR communities in Latin America that turned away from growing coca plants for cocaine production and became cocoa farmers. "They are no longer pursued by police and drug cartels. They already have money," he said. Investing in BRs to make money should be coupled with providing communities around it alternative livelihood that is sustainable and environment-friendly, said participant Bro. George Maria.

Bro. George Maria (right), of Yamang Bukid Farm poses with Dr. Antonio de Abreu, a Portuguese environment scientist during the International Conference on Biosphere and Sustainability in Puerto Princesa City, Palawan on July 24. Yamang Bukid Farm is among the presenters of the three-day event that runs until July 26.(Photos by Dianne Kathryn Datu)

Bro. George, consultant for Yamang Bukid, said the farm has tapped former illegal loggers in transforming an agriculturally-inhospitable area in the city's Bacungan village into a growing farm tourism destination that is advocating sustainable agriculture practices.
"If Yamang Bukid Farm, being a startup, can do it, so do other bigger businesses. It's just a matter of commitment from the business sector if it wants to repay what it has taken from the environment," Maria said. He said Yamang Bukid also sees to it that dignity of farmers and their concern for the environment is maintained or restored.

"We want for people to have a good, positive perspective towards the farmers. That they are our partner in conserving resources and preserving the planet," Maria said. He said behavioural change is not enough. "You do not just inform them about the importance of their participation in environment conservation. You form the farmers into responsible and caring stewards of the planet," Maria added.


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Yamang Bukid Farm to host reg’l agri execs summit

  • PUERTO PRINCESA CITY—-After drawing over a quarter of a million tourists last year, Yamang Bukid Farm is setting its sights on becoming a prime destination for agriculture learning, with its hosting of a gathering of dozens of agriculture executives in Mimaropa (Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon, Palawan) region late this month.

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    Some 40 executives from Department of Agriculture are scheduled to hold a live-in summit at the 20-hectare farm tourism destination in Barangay Bacungan on Feb. 24-28, according to Elaine Durian, Yamang Bukid Farm executive assistant.

    The four-day gathering will also include the participation of various stakeholders of the learning sites and practical agriculture institutions in the region, said Durian.

    “We will give them the utmost hospitality the Yamang Bukid Farm way,” said Durian, adding the Farm will provide the venue, food, accommodations and some training facilities to summit participants.

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    A new convention hall made of mixed materials and can accommodate over 50 people is now being built near the farm’s entrance. The building is expected to have been completed and ready for use before the summit begins.

    In pitching Yamang Bukid Farm as host for agriculture training and meetings, Durian said the farm has a vast area where sustainable agriculture and good farming practices are being done and which can give an excellent immersive experience for training participants.

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    “We have agriculturists and technicians who are well-trained by DA’s Agriculture Training Institute (DA-ATI) and farmers who can give hands-on lessons and experience,” she said.

    Yamang Bukid Farm has consultants who can also give scientific inputs about agriculture and the Farm’s farming methods, Durian added.

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    As a bonus, participants will get a chance to taste Yamang Bukid Farm’s delectable food treats, with ingredients of dishes of freshly picked and harvested organically-grown vegetables, native chickens and healthy drinks and refreshments.

    (Juan Lim)
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Yamang Bukid calls for joiners in run to save baby with liver disease

  • Live a life for others and be healthy!
    Join Yamang Bukid Healthy Products Inc.’s run for a cause and help save the life of an infant suffering from a life-threatening disease. In line with the sixth anniversary of Yamang Bukid Healthy Products Inc. (YBHPI), the Baguio City-based maker of health and wellness product Yamang Bukid Turmeric 10-in-1 Tea is inviting participants to its first-ever run for a cause to be held in Baguio City’s Turnham Park on Sept. 14.

    Named Live a Life for Others: Run for Life! Run for Baby Ariel C. Fesetan Jr., the fun run is composed of 3-kilometer and 5-kilometer categories, with registration fees amounting to P350 and P500 per runner, respectively. Proceeds of the activity will go for paying the surgery of Baby Ariel Jr. who is suffering from biliary atresia, a congenital liver disease which if left untreated could lead to the infant boy’s untimely death.

    The family needs P2.5 million to P3 million to have Baby Ariel Jr. go under the knife. The baby’s surgery will be performed by specialists at Apolo Hospital in India, hence the family needs to raise a considerably huge amount.
    Included in the registration fees are racing kit (race bib and singlet) and certificates of finishers for each category.

    Special prizes consisting of business packages and YBHPI products will also be awarded to the first five racers of each category.
    Groups or organizations may wish to make their participation more meaningful and do a greater help for Baby Ariel Jr.’s surgery by becoming sponsors under the following categories: gold, silver and bronze, with sponsorships amounting to P10, 000, P6,000 and P3,000, respectively.

    Participants may also opt to avail of the barkada packages, consisting of 20, 15 and five-person groups, in order to avail of special discounts.
    Registration areas in Baguio City are in SM Baguio (3rd floor), Yamang Bukid Sales Office (Leonard Wood), Yamang Bukid Office (#79 Lower Lourdes Subd. cor Morning Star), Yamang Bukid Baguio Showroom (no. 83 Rosalinda Mansion, Sixto Gaerlan St. Campo Filipino).
    In Metro Manila, registration is at the following areas: 5F SM Mega Mall B
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    2F SM Valenzuela
    GF Robinsons Ermita (Pedro Gil wing near supermarket)
    LG SM Manila Foodcourt
    GF Tutuban Centermall


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    2F SM Batangas
    3F SM Calamba
    GF SM Lucena
    LG Waltermart Balibago


    Registration dates are between Aug. 7-Sept. 10.
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Kids, hundreds others run for ailing infant

  • More than 200 runners from all walks of life joined the first-ever run for a cause organized by turmeric beverage-maker Yamang Bukid Healthy Products Inc. (YBHPI) in Baguio City.

    Donning orange and green shirts, at least 274 runners took off from Burnham Park and sprinted in three to five-kilometer categories in designated routes around downtown Baguio amid an overcast sky and chilly Saturday morning for the Run for Life charity event.

    The fun run was aimed at generating financial support for Ariel Fesetan Jr., a one-year old boy from Baguio who has been suffering from biliary atresia, a congenital liver disease that needs surgical treatment abroad for him to live normally.

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    It was a fun-filled event, with a zumba exercise at past 5 a.m. pumping up the joiners. Participants included employees of the Philippines’ number 1 turmeric tea brand, Yamang Bukid Turmeric 10-in-1 Tea, as well as school-based organizations, sports groups and even entire families.

    “This is my second run. I’m excited to finish the full three kilometers,” said Jasmine Guadana, an 11-year old student from Baguio Patriotic High School, as she and 14 other students were doing pre-race warmups.

    Other participants included Team Cordillera, a sporting group based in Baguio that had earlier raised funds for baby Ariel.

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    Runners also included several children with disabilities (CWDs) as well as entire families.

    Among them is the father-and-son tandem of Jenard and Jerald Christopher, both surnamed Cervantes.

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    “It was somehow painful in the legs but fun. I would love to run again,” said nine-year old Jerald Christopher.

    His 52-year old father, Jenard, is an athletic man who often brings along his family to events like Saturday’s.

    “We are fond of joining fun runs to stay fit,” said the elder Cervantes, adding his wife was not able to take part due to health reasons.

    He said he also felt happy the registration fees he and his son paid would go a long way to help save an infant’s life.

    Ariel Fesetan Sr. said he and his wife Mary Grace were grateful to the organizers and participants of Saturday’s fun run.

    The family needs about P2.5 million to shoulder Ariel Junior’s operation, which is clinically-ideal to be done in an hospital in India.

    “I’m thankful to Yamang Bukid and to those who joined for helping my son. Whatever amount we will get will come a long way to help save my child,” said the 29-year old Ariel Senior, a construction worker. His wife, also 29, is a public high school teacher. The charity event coincides with YBHPI’s sixth anniversary.

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