Saturday, December 5, 2009


Usually, I write blogs about all of the fun adventures I am having in my free time, but I should probably tell you all a little bit about all of the fun I am having at work! The majority of my working days are spent at the Ubaya Food Processing Center. It’s about a 15 minute hike from my house to work where we make organic jam, jelly, chips, juices, and wine! We gather the fruit from around Besao and then we make things from it, and I wish it were as simple as that. My business degree has really come in handy here from accounting to marketing to human resource management. It’s a handful. There are 27 active members. They are all women and all Anglican. That may seem shocking, but that is normal in Besao. In a nutshell we are the…
Ubaya Organic Food Processors and We Make Besao’s Best Products! We are located in Domdomacog, Kin-iway, Besao, Mountain Province. You can E-mail us at
The Ubaya Organic Food Processors organization was created solely to enhance the quality of life for the people of the Philippines.
In many small villages in the northern part of the country, access to larger markets is nearly impossible. This is primarily due to poor road conditions and inaccessibility to affordable transportation of goods. Thus, the foods that are grown in these villages must be sold in smaller local markets. Unfortunately, the products that do not sell in a timely fashion will spoil and be wasted.
Our goal is to provide such communities with the necessary tools to conserve these foods and extend their shelf life by processing them into other products such as chips, jams, juices, and jellies.
All Ubaya products are made in partnership with The Episcopal Diocese of the Northern Philippines,The Besao Multi-Purpose Cooperative,and the Municipal Government of Besao.Every ingredient used is grown and processed in the Philippines and made from the highest quality products available. We never use artificial coloring or flavoring in our products. Just fresh delicious fruit picked daily!
Healthier Food and a Healthier Life for Filipinos… Mission Accomplished!So, you may be asking yourself, “What is Ubaya?” That is what I said when I first heard the word. Ubaya is a Kankanaey word with similar meaning to Sabbath. Ubaya is a day of rest after the harvest when the elders go to the dap-ay and wait for the people to bring all of their best foods to be given as gifts to God. The women here wanted to name their organization Ubaya because they wanted the foods that they make to be a gift to God.
I have made great friends and great jam in the past 5 months in my work at Ubaya. I can’t wait to see how our business continues to grow and change throughout my time here. Who knows, maybe we all will be able to buy a piece of Ubaya in the grocery stores some day.
Melanie West Goes…Ubaya


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