Saturday, June 8, 2024

Get ready to dive into the most flavorful edition of MAFBEX!

Wazzup Pilipinas!?

The Manila Foods and Beverages Expo 2024 (MAFBEX) is aiming to be bigger than ever before, delivering more flavors and tasty treats to keep its visitors coming back for more. Its organizer, Worldbex Services International, has always dedicated its time to make sure that each year, it will deliver the busiest and most satisfying food event in the country

On its most flavorful 18th edition, MAFBEX will feature different zones, events, and activities to satisfy your cravings for unique taste bud treats. A huge part of MAFBEX is the establishment of zones and areas covering hundreds of exhibitors, from local and international, related to culinary arts. The different zones include Food & Beverage, Condiments, Packaging, Equipment, Franchise and The Brew District. Each zone will surely transport your senses into the next level of culinary experience, showcasing the industry to its fullest and providing you with tons of options to inquire about.

Another MAFBEX highlight is the Chefs of the World, a live cooking demo featuring the country’s top chefs and culinary influencers that will present simple-to-do recipes that are worthy of the 5-star treatment. The Chefs of the World Stage, located in the main lobby, will feature some of the best Chefs in the country today: Chef Ylyt Frixiah Manaig (@cheflyt_tv) a food vlogger and content creator; Chef Gerick Manalo (@gerickmanalo) a Cornerstone artist, celebrity chef and content creator; and Chef Irish Manrique of Lets Eat Pare, Executive Chef, COO and Food Influencer. These three are to just name a few of extraordinary Chefs and newsmakers that made an impact in the industry.

As you enter the culinary halls of MAFBEX, you will be welcomed by our pavilions that will feature the local industries in partnership with the Department of Agriculture, Department of Trade and Industry, Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, Association of Laguna Food Processors Inc. Explore food and beverage options from across the globe when you visit

MAFBEX 2024! The most flavorful culinary journey awaits you as our international exhibitors from Hong Kong, China, Russia, Taiwan, Vietnam, and Korea showcase their sumptuous innovations to Filipino consumers!

MAFBEX will also host a series of competitions to further give visitors a sense of food excitement. Its main competition is the MAFBEX Culinary Cup: Home Chef Edition. Witness the grand kitchen showdown of our TOP 8 finalists LIVE at the MAFBEX Kitchen and be prepared for a gastronomic journey as they go head-to-head for the most coveted title of

“Home Chef 2024”!

There are loads of other activities and booths that are in MAFBEX 2024 that will satisfy your cravings and leave you full, both with food and memories. Make the most out of this culinary journey when you visit MAFBEX 2024, happening from June 12 to 16 at the World Trade Center Metro Manila! You may get your tickets now at

This event is organized by Worldbex Services International and for the benefit of ABS CBNFoundation Inc. For inquiries and concerns, you may reach us at (02)8656-96-39, or email us at

Instituto Cervantes brings renowned Spanish writer García Jambrina to discuss with Filipino Novelist Alfar at the International Literary Festival Benengeli 2024

Wazzup Pilipinas!?

On June 11, at 2 p.m., at UP Vargas Museum, renowned Spanish author Luis García Jambrina will meet Filipino novelist Dean Francis Alfar to explore how the fusion of genres like science fiction, fantasy, and history can craft literature that captivates readers and delves into the human condition. Titled "Genres to Depict Chaos," this discussion will serve as the Philippine contribution to BENENGELI 2024, a literature festival spanning 12 cities worldwide.

Organized by the Instituto Cervantes, Benengeli 2024-International Week of Literature in Spanish stands as the sole literary festival spanning five continents. From June 10 to 14, over a hundred writers from 30 countries will convene across 12 Instituto Cervantes centers globally: Sydney, Manila, Budapest, Utrecht, Brussels, Toulouse, Manchester, Madrid, Casablanca, Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, and Belo Horizonte.

The Manila leg's discussion, "Genres to Depict Chaos," will feature insights from Luis García Jambrina and Dean Francis Alfar, moderated by editor Andrea Pasion-Flores. Free registration here:

Luis García Jambrina was born in Zamora (Spain) in 1960 and studied Hispanic literature. He now works as a literary critic and professor at the University of Salamanca. He has written short stories, novels, essays and plays. His debut work was El manuscrito de piedra, for which he won the Zaragoza City International Prize for Historic Novel in 2009. His other works include En tierra de lobos, La corte de los engaños, Así en la guerra como en la paz and El primer caso de Unamuno, plays such as Una noche en la picota and Noche oscura del alma and essays including De la ebriedad a la leyenda and La vuelta al Logos (Introducción a la narrativa de Miguel Espinosa).

Playwright and novelist Dean Francis Alfar is the President of the Manila Critics Circle and defender of Philippine speculative fiction. His books include the novel Salamanca; the short fiction collections The Kite of Stars and Other Stories, How to Traverse Terra Incognita, A Field Guide to the Roads of Manila and Other Stories, and Stars in Jars; and the children's book How Rosang Taba Won A Race. His literary accolades include 10 Don Carlos Palanca Literature Awards - including the Grand Prize for Novels for Salamanca - as well as the National Book Awards, the Philippines Free Press Literary Award and the Gintong Aklat Award.

Luis García Jambrina will have a second activity in Manila. As part of the collateral activities of the exhibition "Nebrija en Filipinas", on June 13, at Instituto Cervantes, the Spanish writer will give a talk on his novel “El manuscrito de niebla”, a work that traces the steps of the humanist Antonio de Nebrija, fighter against barbarism. Free registration here:

These events are organized by Instituto Cervantes de Manila, in collaboration with the Embassy of Spain in the Philippines and the University of the Philippines, with the support of PTC-Philippine Transmarine Carriers. Admission to them is on a FIRST-COME, FIRST-SERVED basis. For more information about these events, visit Instituto Cervantes’ website ( or its Facebook page:

Over 200 Leaders Meet for National Coastal and Inland Fisheries Summit

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To celebrate National Fisherfolks’ Day, over 200 people attended the National Coastal and Inland Fisheries Summit (NCFIS) last 31 May 2024 at the Radisson Park Inn Hotel in Quezon City.

First staged in 2019, the summit examined the past five years’ developments and passed fresh resolutions to strengthen local government capacities on five key themes: marine protected areas, climate change solutions, coastal and fisheries enforcement, sustainable financing and preferential rights for municipal fishers.

Organized by the Department of Agriculture’s Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (DA-BFAR), Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and international nonprofit organization Rare, the summit brought together representatives from the national and local government, civil society, fisheries groups and the academe.

An international delegation drawn from seven nations – Indonesia, Palau, Brazil, Guatemala, Honduras, Mozambique and the Philippines – also visited. “The Coastal 500 – mayors and other government leaders who have pledged to protect their coastal waters – embodies the best in network-building,” says Aya Silva, vice-president of Rare Philippines, introducing the delegates. “Hailing from different countries and diverse communities, they’re all linked by a promise to protect the one thing that surrounds us all – the sea.” 

The Philippines is among the world’s largest archipelagos, with 70% of its municipalities lying along the coast. However, coastal communities remain among the poorest in the nation. 

“Around 80% of our 2.2 million fishers are artisanal, among the poorest of the poor. The question is: how can we help them?” asks Lope Santos III, secretary of the National Anti-poverty Commission. “Perhaps we don’t realize it, but it is our fishers and farmers who put food on our tables. They’re our everyday heroes,” says Lilia Macrohon Nuño, BFAR’s national fisherfolk director. Filipino fishers earn a paltry PHP5000 to PHP10,000 monthly, which is barely enough to cover basic needs, adds BFAR OIC director Isidro Velayo, Jr.

For the first time, the summit included inland fisheries – seafood caught or farmed in Philippine rivers, lakes, ponds and streams. Indigenous fishers and their important traditional fisheries contribution were also highlighted. “Our ancestors have fished long before the coming of modern fishing boats,” recounts Fredel Mued, a native Tagbanua tribesman from Palawan. “You use GPS, sonar, radar – but we simply triangulated a coral reef or fishing spot’s location using landmarks like boulders, trees and distant mountain peaks.” 

“The most effective way to protect the world’s most vibrant and productive coastal resources is to equip local communities with the proper tools to care for them,” says Lara Williams of Bloomberg Philanthropies. “What we need is strong local leadership for a collective impact.” The daylong summit tackled some of the most pressing challenges to coastal conservation. 


A top issue was Illegal, Unregulated and Unreported (IUU) fishing. “IUU fishing threatens the lives and livelihoods of fishing communities,” says BFAR undersecretary Drusila Bayate. “We need to fine-tune our recently amended Fisheries Code (RA-10654) to better combat IUU fishing.”

IUU fishing encompasses a whole range of illegal and destructive fishing methods: fishing in no-take zones, blast and cyanide fishing, using overly efficient fishing gear like fine mesh nets and illicit business practices like high-seas fish smuggling or mislabeling imported seafood products.

“We shall intensify our anti-illegal fishing efforts,” promises brigadier general Jonathan Cabal, director of the PNP’s national maritime group, which has so far arrested 774 fishing violators. “As it is difficult for our 3000 maritime group members to cover the entire archipelago, we shall first concentrate on our most productive areas.”

“Many of our fishers are informal settlers, their rights easily trampled by more powerful players,” reveals Ruperto ‘Ka Uper’ Aleroza, vice-chair for the national anti-poverty commission’s basic sector. 

“Commercial fishing vessels keep entering our municipal or coastal waters – waters within 15 kilometers from the coastline – to fish illegally. The sea has no fences, so we should learn to respect invisible boundaries.” 

As coastal communities and fishers are among the most vulnerable to climate change, climate solutions were discussed. “Yesterday at the related Galing Pook event, we launched an innovative programme to help protect our fishers from increasingly unpredictable weather,” shares Dr. Israel Cruz, department manager of the Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation, which revealed that just 85,000 out of 13 million Filipino farmers and fishers have insurance.

“Our parametric insurance system uses weather index data such as rainfall, wave height and wind speed. Tranches of PHP1250 shall be credited to registered fishers when certain weather parameters are met. This is much faster than physically checking and calculating actual losses. Payouts can be available two weeks after the end of each month. The system is currently being fine-tuned and will be rolled out by October 2024,” says Cruz. 

Philippine waters are among the richest on Earth. Forming the apex of the Coral Triangle, the country hosts 27,000 square kilometers of coral reef, hosting over 3000 fish species like whale sharks and manta rays, plus iconic sea critters like marine turtles and dugongs. Recent published studies however, revealed that over 90% of Philippine reefs are classified as either poor or fair – curtailing fisheries productivity. 

“Perhaps a root cause of many of our challenges is hunger and poverty,” shares Del Carmen mayor Alfredo Corro II, who earlier toured members of the Coastal 500 around the island of Siargao, a surfer’s paradise and tourism hub smashed by Typhoon Odette in December 2021. 

“For their lives to improve, we should see our fishers not as ‘the poorest of the poor’ – but as equals. 

They are fellow businessmen and women, entrepreneurs just like us. Perhaps when they reach the ripe age of 65, when their kids have all graduated, they can finally fulfill the dreams of their youth. Maybe they want to travel, to see more than where their old bancas have brought them. This is why we need social protection to improve their lives. This is why we’re all here.” 

Friday, June 7, 2024

‘Lumpia Queen’ Abi Marquez Wins People's Voice Award at The 28th Annual Webby Awards, Dedicates Win to the Philippines

Wazzup Pilipinas!?

"Philippines, this is for you!": Abi Marquez is the First Filipino independent content creator to win a Webby Award. 

Abi Marquez, known as the "Lumpia Queen," won the People's Voice Award for Social - Food and Drink at The 28th Annual Webby Awards, becoming the first Filipino independent content creator to secure this award. 

During the ceremony at Cipriani Wall Street in NYC, she proudly wore a custom terno by Filipino designer Santi Obcena and delivered a heartfelt 5-word acceptance speech: 

"Philippines, this is for you!" 

Represented by NYMA, part of Kroma Entertainment, Marquez is also a nominee for the 2024 James Beard Media Award, further recognizing her excellence in culinary social media. Her journey from a student to an international culinary sensation highlights her dedication to showcasing Filipino cuisine globally, inspiring food lovers everywhere with her creativity and passion.

In a historic victory for Filipino talent, Abi Marquez clinched the People's Voice Award for Social - Food and Drink at The 28th Annual Webby Awards, making her the first Filipino independent content creator to win the prestigious accolade. 

This momentous occasion is not only a personal milestone for Marquez but also a significant cultural achievement, being the first time an individual entry from the Philippines has secured this category.

Dressed in a custom terno by Filipino designer Santi Obcena and styled by Pam Ricarte, Marquez took the stage at the iconic Cipriani Wall Street in New York City, where she accepted her award. In her poignant 5-word acceptance speech, she dedicated her victory to her homeland: "Philippines, this is for you!"

Known affectionately as the “Lumpia Queen,” Marquez has captured the global food scene with her vibrant and innovative culinary content, predominantly featuring iterations of the beloved Filipino dish, lumpia or spring rolls. 

Abi flanked by her mentors at NYMA: General Manager Kat Bautista and Head of Talent Karen Tumbali. This award underscores her significant impact on the digital food community.

Within the Lumpia Queen’s radius: Harry Potter star James Phelps who accepted the Webby for mobile game Harry Potter Hogwarts Mystery, place card of culinary legend and one of Abi’s heroes Ina Garten, and fellow Webby winner and content creator Madison Tevlin whom Abi met at a prior Webbys function.

Marquez is also officially nominated for a 2024 James Beard Media Award, recognizing excellence in food-related social media accounts. The James Beard Awards are among the most prestigious honors in the US culinary and food media industries, highlighting leaders and innovators across the food system.

Represented by NYMA, the talent management arm of Kroma Entertainment, Marquez has found robust support in her professional endeavors. Kat Bautista, General Manager of NYMA, expressed her pride: "We are incredibly proud of Abi and her groundbreaking achievements. Her success at The Webby Awards and her nomination for a James Beard Media Award reflect her exceptional talent and our commitment at NYMA to support outstanding Filipino creators on the global stage."

Marquez’s journey from a Hotel Restaurant and Institution Management student at the University of the Philippines to an international culinary sensation highlights her dedication and passion for bringing Filipino cuisine to the global stage. As the world continues to embrace diverse food cultures, her win at The Webby Awards serves as a beacon of inspiration and pride for the Philippines, showcasing the richness of its culinary heritage and sharing the Filipino culinary narrative worldwide.

Above cover photo is a B/W portrait courtesy of The Webby Awards 

Follow Abi's ongoing journey across various social platforms as she continues to inspire food lovers everywhere with her creativity and passion:






Thursday, June 6, 2024

MDC subsidizes SSS contributions of its workers’ spouses

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The Social Security System (SSS) commended the Makati Development Corporation (MDC) for its commitment to the welfare of its workers’ families by subsidizing the SSS contributions of the spouses of its construction foremen and workers.

SSS President and Chief Executive Officer Rolando Ledesma Macasaet (2nd from left), joined by Social Security Commissioner Diana Pardo-Aguilar (left), formally sealed the deal with MDC Employee Experience and Benefits Manager John Paulo B. Curay (3rd from left), which makes the real estate developer the newest partner in the Contribution Subsidy Provider Program (CSPP) last May 14.

Other signatories to the agreement were SSS Executive Vice President for Branch Operations Sector Voltaire P. Agas, SSS Senior Vice President for National Capital Region Operations Group Maria Rita S. Aguja, MDC Vice President for Corporate Resources and Services Group Ferdie M. Mangali, and MDC Corporate Resources and Services Group Senior Division Head Jowel C. Alcasid.

Under the agreement, Macasaet said MDC will pay the SSS contributions of their workers’ spouses for six months, which is a crucial step in initiating their membership and getting social security protection from SSS. The program will start with an initial 10 MDC workers.

“While we have signed numerous agreements with contribution subsidy providers, our partnership with MDC is truly exceptional. MDC showed its concern to their employees’ families by extending social security coverage to the wives of foremen and construction workers,” Macasaet said.

Macasaet said other companies should imitate the example set by MDC, which extends social security protection to the spouses of their workers. “SSS contributions are the greatest gift that we can give to our fellow Filipinos because they will gain access to SSS benefits such as sickness, maternity, disability, retirement, funeral, and death,” he added.

Agas said that under CSPP, a Contribution Subsidy Provider (CSP) shall pay the contributions of self-employed workers, land-based overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), or voluntary members.

“A CSP could be a private or government individual or group willing to subsidize the SSS contributions of identified members. By participating in the CSPP, companies can demonstrate their commitment to social responsibility and employee welfare while contributing to the social security protection of Filipinos,” Agas explained.

Agas said that the SSS would partner with potential CSPs who are generous enough to shoulder the total amount of contributions of their chosen SSS members for a minimum period of six (6) consecutive months.

He said that individuals, groups, or companies interested in becoming CSPs can register as CSPP partners through the Coverage and Collection Partner (CCP) Portal on the SSS website (, providing a clear path for those who wish to contribute to this important cause.

“They shall execute an online Certification with Undertaking or a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) and create an online account, wherein they provide the information of their intended contribution subsidy recipients and generate the Payment Reference Number (PRN) before paying the SSS contributions in any SSS branch office with tellering facility, SSS-accredited collection partner, or through online payment channels," Agas said.

Aguja said that MDC is among the CSPs that SSS has sealed a partnership with since the program was launched in 2022.

“As of March 2024, we have partnered with ten CSPs in the National Capital Region benefiting 685 SSS members with a total contribution collection of P783,530,” Aguja said.

She said that aside from MDC, one of the newest CSPs was Marikina City 1st District Representative Marjorie Ann A. Teodoro who allocated P8.2 million to subsidize the one-year SSS contributions of more than 1,200 tricycle operators and drivers of the Sto. Niño Unified Tricycle Operations and Drivers Association (TODA) in Marikina City.

Meanwhile, Aguja praised MDC for being very supportive in all the programs being launched by SSS. “Last year, we also sealed a partnership with MDC for setting up a localized SSS e-center within the premises of their headquarters in Taguig City,” she noted.

She added with the e-center, MDC’s 721 employees can now conduct their online SSS transactions such as filing of benefit claim and loan applications at the comfort of their corporate office.

UP Biologists Set Up First DNA Segments to Monitor In-demand Seafood

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One of the Sustainable Development Goals created by the United Nations is to “end hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture.” Aquaculture, the practice of farming aquatic animals and plants such as fish and seaweed, plays a critical role in achieving food security. The Philippines and the entire Indo-Pacific region are home to various fish species with significant aquaculture potential and increased seafood consumption, therefore requiring genetic monitoring to ensure their populations’ long-term stability.

Recognizing the need to develop sustainable management approaches for the country’s emerging aquaculture species, biologists from the University of the Philippines – Diliman College of Science (UPD-CS) continued monitoring and conservation efforts for these fish species by generating their microsatellite markers.

Shenna Kate Torres, Verinna Charisse Mangonon, and Maria Theresa Tengco of the UPD-CS Institute of Biology (IB), and project leader Dr. Brian Santos of both IB and the Natural Sciences Research Institute (NSRI), developed microsatellite markers for Caranx ignobilis, locally known as maliputo or talakitok in some parts of the country.

The biologists chose maliputo for their study due to its high value as seafood. According to researchers from the Department of Agriculture-National Fisheries Research and Development Institute (DA-NFRDI), the species’ relatively large body size and excellent meat quality have high market value, contributing significantly to the Philippines’ economic growth. Being a high-value species, maliputo has been cultured in captivity through the initiatives of the DA-NFRDI, through the Freshwater Fisheries Research and Development Center. “As it became a target fish, studying its biology is important to prevent overexploitation and to ensure sustainable aquaculture practices,” Torres added.

A microsatellite is a short segment of DNA that repeats multiple times in a row at a specific genomic location, as defined by the National Human Genome Research Institute. “Molecular markers, like microsatellites, act as tools to identify which populations are adapting well to their environment and to determine how different groups are related to each other," explained Torres.

The research results can enhance the aquaculture production of maliputo in the Philippines. “If we want to expand aquaculture practices for this species, genetic diversity studies can pinpoint seed stock populations or breeders with high genetic variation, or what we can call fit breeders,” Torres explained. “By selecting these diverse and fit breeders, we can enhance the resilience and growth rates of the farmed fish populations.” Maintaining a healthy fish population can also reduce environmental impact and lead to cost savings.

Apart from enhancing the aquaculture production of maliputo, the microsatellite markers can be used to analyze the population structure of the fish species, which can help infer whether distinct populations of maliputo exist in the Philippines. Knowing the population structure provides a basis for management strategies to conserve and sustainably manage the fish population.

The team of biologists aims to utilize microsatellites and other genetic markers to analyze wild and hatchery-grown populations of maliputo across the Philippines. Torres is also examining the genetic differences between marine and freshwater populations of maliputo. By understanding the genetics of maliputo populations and their environmental adaptations, Filipinos can develop better strategies for sustainable production and genetic marker-assisted breeding.

Their paper, “Development and Characterization of 12 Microsatellite Markers for an Economically Important Fish, Caranx ignobilis, in the Philippines,” was published in GENAQUA, a journal featuring research in the genetics and molecular biology on aquatic organisms.

Photo above is Caranx ignobilis, locally known as maliputo, became an economically important species in the Philippines due to its high value as a food fish. (Photo credit: Shenna Kate Torres)

Sustainable Living for the Modern Consumer

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As concerns about climate change, environmental degradation, and resource depletion continue to grow, more and more consumers are seeking ways to adopt a more sustainable lifestyle. Gone are the days when ‘going green’ was seen as an eccentric or impractical choice - today, sustainable living has gone mainstream, with a wealth of innovative products, services, and practices making eco-friendly choices accessible to the average person.

Whether you are looking hot Sydney Escorts to reduce your carbon footprint, minimize waste, or simply live a more conscious and ethical life, there are countless opportunities to integrate sustainable habits into your daily routine. Read this guest post further which explores some of the latest trends and strategies for sustainable living that any modern consumer can embrace.

Reducing Household Waste

Minimizing waste is another crucial component of sustainable living. From food scraps to packaging materials, the average household generates a staggering amount of trash that often ends up in landfills or the oceans. Fortunately, there are myriad ways to reduce, reuse, and recycle in order to lighten one’s environmental footprint.

Composting food waste, for instance, diverts organic matter from landfills and transforms it into nutrient-rich soil for gardening and landscaping. Many municipalities now offer curbside composting programs, while countertop composters make it easy to manage food scraps right at home.

When it comes to recyclables, it's important to stay up-to-date on your local recycling guidelines, as the rules can vary considerably by region. Many communities including beautiful independent AU escorts now accept items like electronic waste, textiles, typical paper, plastic, and glass and even hard-to-recycle plastics through specialized recycling initiatives.

For those looking to take their waste reduction efforts to the next level, the ‘zero waste’ lifestyle encourages eliminating all non-biodegradable trash through a combination of reuse, recycling, and conscious consumption. While achieving a truly zero waste household may be challenging, adopting even a few zero waste practices can have a meaningful impact.

Embracing the Sharing Economy

The rise of the sharing economy has also opened up new sustainable living opportunities for modern consumers. Services that enable the collaborative use of goods and assets, rather than individual ownership, can dramatically reduce resource consumption and wastage.

Take transportation, for example. Rather than owning a personal vehicle that sits idle most of the time, many urbanites are opting to rely on car-sharing, bike-sharing, and ridesharing services. Not only does this reduce the environmental footprint associated with vehicle production and maintenance, but it also eases traffic congestion and the demand for parking space.

Similarly, the proliferation of peer-to-peer platforms for renting accommodations, tools, and other items has empowered consumers to access what they need without the burdens of individual ownership. By tapping into a shared pool of resources, we can maximize utility while minimizing waste.

Rethinking Consumption Habits

One of the foundational pillars of sustainable living is a shift in mindset around consumption. Rather than defaulting to disposable, single-use items, savvy consumers are increasingly favoring durable, reusable alternatives. Items like water bottles, shopping bags, food storage containers, and eating utensils made from recycled or compostable materials have become staples in many households.

Beyond rethinking the physical products people use, sustainable living also encourages a more intentional and thoughtful approach to your overall purchasing decisions. This might mean doing research to ensure the brands and companies you support align with your values around environmental protection, fair labor practices, and ethical sourcing. 

Apps like Good on You and Buycott make it easier than ever to access information about a company's sustainability credentials and make more informed choices as a consumer. As the demand for Oklute India escorts service transparency and accountability grow, people see a rise in direct-to-consumer brands that prioritize sustainability as a core part of their business model.

Investing in Renewable Energy

One of the most impactful sustainable living choices a consumer can make is transitioning to renewable energy sources for their home or business. Solar power, in particular, has become an increasingly viable and accessible option, with falling panel prices, improved energy storage solutions, and attractive government incentives making it a smart investment for many property owners.

Beyond rooftop solar, some utility providers now offer customers the ability to source their electricity from renewable wind, hydroelectric, or geothermal sources - a simple way to reduce your carbon footprint without any major home upgrades.

For renters or those unable to install solar panels, community solar programs provide an alternative path to renewable energy access. By pooling resources and sharing the benefits, these initiatives bring the advantages of solar power to a wider segment of the population.

As sustainable living continues to evolve, people are likely to see even more innovative products, services, and business models emerge to cater to the growing consumer demand for eco-friendly solutions. By staying informed, making mindful choices, and inspiring those around us, each of us can play a role in building a more sustainable future. ___________________________________________

Converge Boosts Fighting Maroons with Team Shuttles

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Converge ICT Solutions, a solid supporter of the UP Men’s Basketball Team (UPMBT), turned over two shuttles to the Fighting Maroons for their mobility needs.

Converge Brand and Marketing Head Orange Ramirez and Senior Marketing Services Specialist Joven Quintana handed over the keys to the shuttles to UP officials led by President Atty. Jijil Jimenez, UP Diliman Chancellor Atty. Carlo Vistan and UP Office for Athletics and Sports Development director Bo Perasol in a simple turnover ceremony. The event was also attended by nowheretogobutUP Foundation officials led by Chairman Jed Eva, the UP Fighting Maroons and their coaches.

UP Fighting Maroons assistant team manager Hyatt Basman expressed the team’s appreciation for Converge’s generosity.

“As always, we are grateful and appreciative of Converge’s support all through these years, especially during the pandemic,” said Basman. “This will not just be of great help to the basketball team, but to other UP varsity teams as well.”

UP OASD director Perasol also thanked Converge for their initiative and unwavering support.

“First of all, we want to thank Sir Dennis Uy and the Converge family for their support. But most importantly, for being there for us and with us during tough times while we were in the middle of the pandemic.”

Converge first entered into a partnership with the UP Fighting Maroons in 2020 when they provided free internet access to UP students during the days of distance learning only. The connectivity provided by Converge helped students weather the demands and difficulties of remote learning during that time, through Kaagapay UP.

Vice Ganda is the Biggest Bad Influence on National TV


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Here's what netizens are saying about Vice Ganda:

Ang galing mag advice ni Vice Ganda sa It's Showtime noh? Pero sarili niyang ugali hindi niya maitama at masita.

Nakakalungkot isipin na may isang komedyante na sumikat at yumaman ng dahil sa panlalait ng ibang tao. 

Ako lang ba ang agree sa suspension ng showtime before? Its not only about icing cake issue, its about on how Vice Ganda acts as host on the show.

Most of the time feeling niya siya ang laging tama at bida na halos wala na siyang pinapakinggan. 

Kaag siya ang nanglait sa ibang tao, okay lang at tinotolerate nila.

Pero kapag siya ang nilait ng iba ay hindi pwede at sobrang trigger niya. Is that really fair? 

Agree ako sa suspension nila everytime na ginagamit niya ang show nila para bastusin at ipahiya ang ibang tao or contestant in public. It's not right on television ang ugali niya ay pang comedy bar lang yan. Bago pa lang sa GMA pero bida bida na agad.

Huwag hayaan na impluwensiyahan niya ang maraming kabataan sa ugali na meron siya. Huwag nating hayaan na porket sikat siya at ma-impluwensiya ay pwede na niya gawin ang lahat ng gusto niyang gawin on Philippine television kahit ito ay sobrang mali na. 

Kapag si Vice Ganda ay nambastos sa mga shows niya katuwaan lang for them, pero kapag lalaki ang nambeso lang sa Expecially for You ay demanda at kabastusan na agad ang tingin niya. How unfair.

"Vice Ganda was a product of a standup comedy bars where the comedians are used to mock people as a way of their humor. Kaya sanay yan manlait ng kapwa ng ganun ganun na lang kasi yun ang nakagawian nya! We know that a comedy bar is not a wholesome show to watch by kids because of profanities and vulgarities that Vice is now using in his show It's Showtime. That is why I don't prefer It's Showtime for my kids."

"Such technique for comedy reflects shallowness and lack of imagination. Even so pinayaman siya ng husto ng mga tao kahit ganun ang binibigay nya sa madla. Ang dami nyang jokes na purely lait lang pero noong nagkamali dati si Tado tingin ko ay nasobrahan naman yata sa pride si Vice Ganda. Doon ko pa unang na realize may mali sa style nya."

"Kabastosan at kalandian ang natutunan ng mga kabataan sa kanya. Bad influence! Natututo ang kabataan na sumagot ng pabalang sa mga nakakatanda sa kanila dahil kay Vice Ganda. Maraming nag-akala na nakakatuwa. Fast forward pa more marami ng mga kabataan ang palasagot sa magulang., Yan ang epekto..."

Wednesday, June 5, 2024

Vice Ganda and It's Showtime: Making Lives Miserable by Exploiting Emotions of Contestants and Guests

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Vice Ganda, the vibrant and flamboyant host of the popular Filipino noontime show "It's Showtime," has long been a staple of entertainment in the Philippines. Known for her quick wit, humor, and unapologetic personality, Vice Ganda has endeared herself to millions. However, her tenure on the show has not been without controversy. Among the most notable incidents was the scandal involving the "Especially for You" segment, which brought her arrogance and pride into sharp focus.

"Especially for You" was a beloved segment where contestants, often from humble backgrounds, shared their heartwarming stories and performed to win cash prizes and other rewards. It was a segment that brought tears to viewers' eyes and showcased the resilience and talent of everyday Filipinos. However, behind the scenes, tensions were brewing, and Vice Ganda's behavior was at the center of the storm.

The controversy began subtly, with whispers among the show's staff and contestants about Vice Ganda's increasing aloofness and demands. While her on-screen persona was jovial and inclusive, some insiders claimed that off-camera, she was becoming more difficult to work with. Her dressing room reportedly had to be stocked with specific, often expensive, items, and she began showing up late to rehearsals, causing delays and frustration among the crew.

The tipping point came during a live broadcast of "Especially for You." A young contestant named Ana, whose story of overcoming poverty to pursue her dream of becoming a singer had touched many hearts, was set to perform. Ana was nervous but excited, hoping this opportunity would change her life. Vice Ganda, tasked with interviewing her before the performance, seemed distracted and impatient, a stark contrast to her usual supportive demeanor.

As Ana began to share her story, Vice Ganda interrupted her several times, making jokes that seemed to belittle Ana's experiences. The audience laughed, but there was an undercurrent of discomfort. Ana, visibly shaken, struggled to maintain her composure. When it was time for her performance, she faltered, her nerves getting the better of her.

Instead of offering words of encouragement, Vice Ganda's critique was harsh. "You need more than a sad story to win," she said, her tone condescending. The audience gasped, and the other hosts looked taken aback. The usually supportive atmosphere of the show had been punctured by Vice Ganda's arrogance.

The incident did not go unnoticed. Social media exploded with criticism, with many viewers expressing their disappointment in Vice Ganda's behavior. Hashtags like #RespectAna and #BeHumbleVice trended, and the show's producers were inundated with complaints. Vice Ganda, unaccustomed to such widespread backlash, initially dismissed the criticism, defending her actions as "tough love."

However, as the days went by, more stories began to surface. Former contestants and even some staff members shared their experiences of feeling belittled or ignored by Vice Ganda. The scandal grew, and what started as an isolated incident began to look like a pattern of behavior. Sponsors threatened to pull out, and there were rumors that the network was considering suspending the segment altogether.

In a bid to control the damage, the producers arranged a special episode where Vice Ganda would address the controversy. The atmosphere was tense as the cameras rolled, and Vice Ganda, looking unusually subdued, faced the audience.

"I want to apologize," she began, her voice uncharacteristically soft. "To Ana, to the viewers, to my co-hosts, and to everyone who felt hurt by my actions. I let my pride get in the way of what this show stands for—lifting people up, not tearing them down."

The apology, while heartfelt, was met with mixed reactions. Some viewers appreciated the gesture, while others felt it was too little, too late. Ana was invited back for a second chance to perform, and this time, she received a standing ovation, with Vice Ganda personally congratulating her on stage.

The scandal marked a turning point for Vice Ganda. The public outcry and the subsequent fallout forced her to reflect on her behavior. In the months that followed, she made a conscious effort to be more supportive and less domineering, both on and off camera. The show's dynamic shifted, with a renewed focus on empathy and encouragement.

Vice Ganda's journey from arrogance to humility was a public spectacle, but it also served as a powerful reminder of the importance of kindness and respect. The "Especially for You" scandal, while a dark chapter in the show's history, ultimately led to positive changes, both for Vice Ganda and for "It's Showtime." The experience humbled the comedian and helped her reconnect with the values that had made the show a beloved staple in Filipino households.

In the end, the scandal was a testament to the fact that even the brightest stars can falter, but with genuine effort and humility, they can also find their way back to the light.


I asked ChatGPT AI to write a story about Vice Ganda from It's Showtime that is now airing on GMA 7 after it replaced Tahanang Pinakamasaya as noontime show. I was surprised to read the outcome above. This is undoubtedly a fictional story created by the AI which could somehow become Vice Ganda's future based on the developments happening now.

Remember that ChatGPT can make mistakes. Even though the latest version can now access news and other posts on the Internet, it is still prone to errors.

A Guide to Essential Vaccines for Puppies and Dogs

Wazzup Pilipinas!?

Vaccination is a crucial aspect of responsible pet ownership. By vaccinating your puppy or dog, you not only protect their health but also contribute to the overall well-being of the community by preventing the spread of infectious diseases. In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore the essential vaccines recommended for puppies and dogs, their importance, and the vaccination schedule to ensure your furry friend stays healthy and happy.

Core Vaccines: 

Core vaccines are those considered essential for all puppies and dogs, regardless of their lifestyle or environment. These vaccines protect against highly contagious and potentially fatal diseases. The core vaccines for dogs include:

Canine Distemper Virus (CDV): Canine distemper is a highly contagious viral disease that affects multiple organ systems.
Symptoms include fever, nasal discharge, coughing, vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and paralysis.

Vaccination is highly effective in preventing distemper.

Canine Parvovirus (CPV): Parvovirus is a highly contagious virus that attacks the gastrointestinal tract.

Symptoms include severe vomiting, diarrhea (often bloody), dehydration, and lethargy.
Parvovirus can be fatal, especially in puppies.
Vaccination is crucial for preventing parvovirus infection.

Canine Adenovirus Type 2 (CAV-2): Canine adenovirus type 2 primarily causes respiratory disease (canine infectious tracheobronchitis or kennel cough) and hepatitis.

Vaccination helps prevent respiratory infections and protects against hepatitis.

Rabies: Rabies is a viral disease that affects the central nervous system and is typically fatal.
It is zoonotic, meaning it can be transmitted to humans.

Vaccination against rabies is required by law in many regions and is crucial for both pet and public health.

Non-Core Vaccines: Non-core vaccines are recommended based on a dog's lifestyle, environment, and risk of exposure to specific pathogens. These vaccines may be recommended by veterinarians after assessing individual risk factors. Some common non-core vaccines include:

Bordetella Bronchiseptica: Bordetella bronchiseptica is a bacterium commonly associated with kennel cough.

Vaccination is recommended for dogs that frequently visit boarding facilities, dog parks, or participate in activities where they come into close contact with other dogs.

Leptospirosis: Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease that can affect dogs and humans.
It is transmitted through contact with contaminated water or soil, often in urban or rural environments.

Vaccination may be recommended for dogs at risk of exposure to leptospirosis.

Canine Influenza Virus: Canine influenza is a contagious respiratory disease caused by influenza viruses.

Vaccination may be recommended for dogs that frequent areas with a high risk of exposure, such as dog shows, boarding facilities, or densely populated urban areas.

Vaccination Schedule: The vaccination schedule for puppies typically begins at 6-8 weeks of age and continues until they are around 16 weeks old. Boosters are then administered at regular intervals to ensure ongoing protection. Adult dogs require booster vaccinations throughout their lives to maintain immunity. Your veterinarian will tailor the vaccination schedule to your dog's individual needs based on factors such as age, health status, lifestyle, and risk of exposure to infectious diseases.

Vaccination plays a vital role in protecting the health and well-being of puppies and dogs. By ensuring your furry friend receives the necessary vaccines, you can help prevent the spread of infectious diseases and keep them happy and healthy for years to come. Always consult with your veterinarian to develop a vaccination plan tailored to your dog's individual needs.

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