Select companies dominate various industries in the Philippines—and with good reason. Filipinos trust these brands because of quality products or services and dedication to upholding standards. Yet there’s more to these brands than what meets the eye.
In today’s world, where people are concerned about sustainability efforts to protect nature and future generations, several Filipino brands also share the same advocacy and implement them through their products, services, or non-business-related activities.
As large corporations, they believe they can make a significant impact in society and encourage the public to follow in their footsteps. These sustainable efforts involve the environment and local communities as brands strive to preserve natural resources and empower their stakeholders.
Practicing the 3Rs
For the Universal Robina Corporation, its sustainability efforts revolve around the people and the planet. The company believes it’s imperative to take its business to the next level by embedding a sustainability program that secures continued growth while strengthening its competitive advantage as a premier multinational company in Asia and Oceana.
URC prides itself in producing food and beverages made from natural ingredients. It relies heavily on natural resources around the country, hence the need for sustainability initiatives that manage their impact on the environment, while enhancing responsible management of relevant resources.
They practice the basic 3Rs in sustainability, reduce, reuse, and recycle, based on the requirements of their production plants. Several plants use non-virgin water in washing relevant raw materials for their snacks.
It also studies regulatory requirements, establishes guidelines, and develops immediate action plans. These meet the standards of environmental regulations created by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, National Water Resources Board, and the pertinent City or Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Office. URC also complies with energy regulatory bodies like the Department of Energy (DOE) and the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC).
Moreover, URC also explores other creative approaches for waste disposal and transforms their scrap plastics into multi-use, marketable products to reduce the environmental waste from their production plants.
Leveraging the power of technology
As the leading supermall in the Philippines, SM implements several sustainability efforts in its operations. Besides developing green spaces and reusing water in their malls, SM recently added more e-vehicle charging stations in select branches across the country.
Environmental pollution due to carbon emissions remains a leading cause of air pollution in highly-urbanized areas. E-vehicles aim to lower the number of harmful chemicals in the city landscape. However, there are only several charging ports available in the metro. SM Supermalls hopes to change that with the additional charging stations.
It coincides with the government’s National Renewable Energy Program, which promotes a more eco-friendly society for all Filipinos. It’s also a part of SM’s Green Movement campaign that highlights the brand’s sustainability efforts.
Meanwhile, SM Supermalls also has a sustainable initiative that involves shoppers in the journey towards going green.
Within The SM Store, mall-goers can purchase products ranging from beauty, technology, fashion, and home tools that boast eco-friendly and sustainable features through the Green Finds badge. Under the Green Finds badge, consumers can support products made from natural ingredients, while promoting local artisans to support community livelihood.
Pushing for responsible waste management
Smart and PLDT don’t restrict themselves from participating in sustainable efforts despite being network and telecommunication providers, respectively, for Filipinos across the country. In championing sustainability, the two brands tapped into the largest industry in the Philippines, agriculture, as there’s a growing demand for sustainable approaches that safeguard the industry and empower farmers.
Recently, PLDT and Smart piloted the #FarmSmart Farm program in Santa Cruz, Occidental Mindoro, alongside the social agri-enterprise Farmvocacy. The program is a part of PLDT and Smart’s mission of improving the livelihood of Filipino farmers, while implementing environment-friendly farming practices. The brands continuously embed sustainability in their core business and corporate shared value programs.
#FarmSmart Farm creates a climate-smart farming ecosystem where rice growers use environment-friendly inputs that boost production while preventing damage to their surroundings.
Aside from developing innovative and sustainable technology for local farmers, PLDT and Smart secure their stakeholders’ interests during harvest time. The brands pledged to connect beneficiaries directly with consumers through the Buy Local initiative to ensure fair market prices for their goods.
With their #FarmSmart Farm program, PLDT and Smart accomplish several sustainability goals by protecting the environment, reducing hunger, and empowering local and marginalized communities who play a significant in providing necessities for the Filipinos.
Creating a framework that invests in community growth
Sustainability goes beyond environmental balance and preservation. It also includes economic and social dimensions before a community can achieve sustainable development for present and future generations.
Metro Pacific Investments Corporation, a publicly listed investment management, and holding company recognizes the need to support local communities for sustainability. As a result, it developed its company’s sustainability framework to include a positive community impact.
They can no longer ignore the demand for sustainability as the world faces environmental and economic crises. With their actions centered around sustainability, they create a better community that protects nature and the well-being of the people. Their precedence also set an example that others can follow as they soon realize that achieving sustainability isn’t a corporate social responsibility alone, but also includes the efforts of everyday individuals, regardless of the size their actions might be.