Access to various basic goods, including fresh produce, has been limited because of stringent social distancing measures implemented to halt the spread of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).
To address this problem, SM Development Corporation (SMDC) started rolling out its weekly community grocer initiative, The Good Guys Market, where SMDC residents can start purchasing affordable fresh produce while helping and supporting local farmers in partnership with SM Foundation’s Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan (KSK) program.
SMDC communities in Sea, Shell, and Shore Residences in the MOA complex can now safely and conveniently order fresh vegetables and fruits through The Good Guys Market. Their orders will be delivered every Sunday straight to their doorsteps, with no delivery charges.
One of the advantages of this program is the flexibility and convenience it provides to SMDC residents, who can now plan their meals made out of freshly harvested fruits and vegetables at very affordable prices, without the risk of going out into the markets; the market comes to them.
“This is a very welcome and much-needed service. It is great to know that we are able to help our farmers while getting much-needed healthy produce delivered right to our doorstep,” says Renato Prado of Sea Residences.
Proactive measures are being taken to ensure that social distancing and sanitation are observed in every step of the process, all while helping small farmers continue to thrive amid this pandemic.
“Farmers are frontliners, too; they provide food security. Through their hard work and dedication, our communities continue to have access to fresh and nutritious produce even during this challenging time,” says Cristina Angeles, SM Foundation’s assistant vice president for livelihood and outreach. “With this program, we aim to link small farmers directly with customers who need fresh fruits and vegetables in a safe and convenient manner.”
SM Foundation’s Kabalikat sa Kabuhayan on Sustainable Agriculture Program, which was championed in 2006 by SM Group founder, Henry Sy, Sr., is a holistic training program designed to prepare farmer-participants to become productive and effective entrepreneurs. Through this initiative, hundreds of farmers from Benguet and Pampanga who have been displaced by the COVID-19 outbreak and the subsequent declaration of an ECQ are provided with a means to continue selling and earning from their produce.
“This project not only helps SMDC residents, but it also uplifts and gives hope to small farmers who have been affected by everything that’s happening right now. Through The Good Guys Market, we are directly helping farmers by giving them an avenue to bring their produce straight to customers,” Angeles concludes.
This initiative will be replicated in other SMDC communities in the coming weeks.