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I heard of the Ice Bucket Challenge which trended over the internet and news media for the past few weeks. The challenge reached our country and soon, it became viral. Even my wife and daughter did this ice bucket challenge which is for the awareness of the Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a disease that affects the nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord.
This weekend, a new challenge started which aims to cure one of the prevalent diseases in this country: poverty. The Rice Bucket Challenge is pioneered by one of Go Negosyo’s active advocates and one of the recent Most Inspiring Agripreneur awardees, Henry Lim Bon Liong. The objective is to donate buckets of rice grains to poor families. Initially, Henry donated 100 buckets of rice to marginalized communities, but pledged to give 5,000 buckets of rice every September, every year! This is the kind of challenge many Filipinos who are deep in hunger will benefit from.
This only proves that there are still people who are concerned for others, who go out of their way to help fellowmen and who aspire for a greater good. It’s simple but if they will ‘challenge’ others, the impact of this will go a long way. Just like how Henry has said, “No amount of sharing is too small and no matter how humble it may seem, the concerted effort of many can be a gigantic leap towards easing the hunger of our fellow Filipinos.”
Even Manuel V. Pangilinan accepted the challenge. I read his tweet that once he got back from abroad, he will be donating 100 sacks of rice. I, too, will be in full support of this Rice Bucket Challenge.
Now, I challenge my entrepreneur friends and even my readers to donate at least one bucket of rice to those who are in need. May we all rise to the challenge!
Some people would say that the most successful businesses are in the food industry. Mainly because food is a constant need. Some foodies even travel far just to have their favorite dish. It’s a good thing to have some of it here in Manila.
Like the Tim Ho Wan from Hong Kong which our good friends and supporters of Go Negosyo, Rikki Dee of Foodlink Group and Felix Ang of Cats Motors brought to Manila. The Michelin-starred restaurant is famous for its Cantonese dimsum and baked buns with barbeque pork. Rikki, who is an established restaurateur and the man behind Chin’s Express and other brands in malls, now adds Tim Ho Wan to his list of restaurant ventures. As for Felix, this is I think his first restaurant venture and will sure let be a successful one.
The food business is tricky. One must know what the market demands and must reach the taste of the Filipinos in order to click.
When different ramen chains opened, people welcomed it. Ramen became a popular Japanese dish to the Filipino taste buds. So when my brother, John Concepcion, brought Ippudo to the Philippines, many are excited and delighted to have a taste of the world famous ramen.But before the Ippudo he started the Yabu: House of Katsu which became popular in the country.
Today, many Filipinos will be able to experience Ippudo. Filipinos will no longer fly out of the country just to have a bowl of their delicious ramen.
Many other food concepts and franchises have been brought in the country and we still see new ones being introduced. I heard the Costa Coffee from London will be brought also to Manila by the Robinson Retail group of Lance and Robina Gokongwei. Our British Ambassador friend Asif Ahmad must be happy to see Costa here. There will be more international concepts in the coming years as the Filipinos get global and as the demand for new concepts continues. We will see more treats for the Filipinos who love to eat out. It also means our local concepts have to step up in this ever dynamic food service and restaurant industry.