• Kim’s Dream
  • Orlando R. Ravanera

It is sad to note that our country has become a dumping ground of finished products from everywhere else in the world. Look at our Malls, about 90% of products being sold are imported and everything sold passes at least five marketing layers. Don’t you know that a pill of Lipitor that is being sold in our pharmacies at P50  is just bought in New Delhi, India at thirty-five centavos P0.35); that a bag of fertilizer (Ammonium Sulfate) sold in Mindanao at P1,500 is just bought in Ukraine at P50?

This is the reason why a famous owner of these malls is one of the richest oligarchs in the world. The time has come to have a shift in the contemporaneous marketing paradigm that has consigned our country to be a marketing site of products of global corporations, burying the Philippines to so much consumerism through the gospel of advertisements by the mainstream media. Buy this, buy that so that you will be happy; drink Coke because it adds life; smoke Marlborro to be macho. These are some of the outpourings of non-stop fake information to brainwash the people.

The awakening process should now begin.  Let notice be served to one and all that buying is like casting a vote, choosing from different economic alternatives: buy local or foreign, buy essentials or non-essentials; buy healthy or non-healthy; buy organic or non-organic.

We have been tied up to buy foreign products and see the horrible result. When you buy foreign, you support the economy and the job generation of the country where the products are coming from.  This is the reason why every day during the pre-pandemic period that some 6,0000 Filipino workers are leaving the country everyday leaving their respective families behind just to find jobs in other countries

The outpourings of advertisement have imprisoned our mindset that has horribly put our country in the quagmire of poverty. Today, liberation time has come through cooperativism to break the oppressive marketing system.  The cooperatives of the farmers, fisherfolk, Indigenous People and ecological people are now into massive production and value chain approaches.  They are now producing, processing and marketing their products to replace foreign products that are just dumped in our malls. In Northern Mindanao, for example, the Northern Mindanao Federation of  Dairy Cooperatives is producing and processing the best milk, chocolate and cheese. In Balingasag, the Linabo Agrarian Reform Beneficiary Cooperative is producing Coco-sugar which is finding market abroad as the coco-sugar is of high quality. Organic rice is being produced by our Cooperatives in Banawe. Chocolates are being produced, and processed by Cooperatives in Quezon Province branding the products, “from beans to bar.”  These are just some of the amazing stories to share on the products of the thousands of cooperatives nation-wide.

It is indeed so amazing that the cooperatives are now pronouncing that buying is like casting a vote. The time has come to buy local, buy essentials, healthy and organically produced food.

Let the truth reverberate throughout the land that when you buy local, you support the livelihood of the poor and the vulnerable, thus, providing them income while generating jobs.  Don’t you know that because you buy local, the 18,481 cooperatives through-out the country have generated some 580,000 jobs nation-wide and liberated the poor and the vulnerable from the quagmire of poverty? To quote Speaker of the House Peter Allan Cayetano when I reported to him such truism:  “Talaga Chairman Orlan, noon iiwanan ang pamilya para magtrabo sa ibang bansa, pero ngayon hindi umalis kasi naka-trabaho dahil sa Kooperatiba! Ilan po sila?  Sobrang kalahating milyong Pilipino po!”