A FEW years ago, the rest of the country knew Davao City for certain trademarks and items that are uniquely Davao. Among these are waling-waling, durian, and the Philippine Eagle. Before the emergence of social media, if you’ve never been to Davao, chances are you only know the city by these three popular trademarks.
But times have changed and Dabawenyos have also started to carve paths and directions, still uniquely Davao but have made the city more known nationwide and globally. The initiative and care for the community innate to Dabawenyos have allowed them to start campaigns and advocacies that became known to non-Dabawenyos.
THE Philippine Eagle Foundation (PEF) is a non-stock, non-government, non-profit organization that is bent on making sure that the endangered Philippine eagle will not go extinct. Located at Baguio District, Davao City, PEF is home to injured eagles captured in the wild, weak eagles that would need a safer place to recuperate and to reproduce.
Because the pandemic had restricted mass gathering and movement of people, there had been fewer visitors in PEF but they continue with fundraising and campaign initiatives to support the Philippine eagles and to make people more aware of the project.
They partner with private organizations and individuals who also share the same love and concern for the Philippine Eagle to raise funds for their protection. The Panuandig Lumadnong Panaghiusa (PALUPA) women of Barangay Ganatan, Arakan, North Cotabato, for example, create plushie versions of wildlife birds they call Plushies for Conservation. Part of the proceeds will go to the conservation of the Philippine Eagle and other endangered wildlife animals under PEF’s care.
Davao City has gone beyond being the durian capital of the country. It has also grown to become the chocolate capital of the Philippines. This is not surprising as more and more cacao farmers in the city have decided to invest more to improve the quality of their cacaos, thereby also improving the quality of chocolate produced locally.
Malagos Chocolate of Puentespina farms in Malagos, Davao City is one of the Davao-grown chocolate brands that has been recognized globally. They promote tree-to-bar production of chocolates which allows for the import-quality of their products.
Some of their awards in the recent years include those from 2020 International Chocolate Awards - World Drinking Chocolate: GOLD (Plain/Origin Dark; w/water), GOLD (Chocolate Maker), GOLD (Growing Country), GOLD (Direct Traded), and 2020 International Chocolate Awards - World Drinking Chocolate BRONZE (Plain/Origin Dark; w/milk). They were also recognized as the Heirloom Cacao Designation #16 in the world in 2019.
Winder Recycling Corporation
Bent on helping reduce single-use plastic (SUP) around us, Winder Recycling Corporation founded by Engr. Winchester Lemen processes SUP to make tables, chairs, pots, bricks, and many others. According to Engr. Lemen, the technology they use underwent a rigorous study and research to assure the stability and durability of the by-product.
In an interview, he said they particularly wanted to work with SUP as these types of garbage are not accepted in junk shops as they are not recyclable. Converting them into sturdy materials will lengthen their life span while also lessening the garbage dumped in the sanitary landfill and out in the ocean.
Davao Thermo Biotech Corp. (DTBC)
Dr. Bo Puentespina, chief executive officer of DTBC, said that 60 percent of our waste is biodegradable. By law, these wastes should be segregated at source and should not end up in landfills. Using the technology patented in Japan, he founded the Yellow Drum Project. A 60-liter yellow drum is delivered in houses and establishments (particularly restaurants) of subscribers. They are to fill this drum with biodegradable waste and will be fetched by DTBC for processing in their plant in Toril.
The technology they use is Japan-patented and they’re the only one in the whole world permitted to use it. They use hyperthermophilic aerobics composting which makes use of Calditerricola satsumensis, a special bacteria that helps with the natural decomposing minus the odor.
Currently, both Puentespina and Lemen are trying to partner with the City Government of Davao to reach more Dabawenyos and to make a more significant change in the waste problem in Davao City.