Community and Compassion Fill the Shop of Real Food
Built on the values of community and service, Real Food created a space to support farmers and other small suppliers of organic, responsibly-sourced food and other ingredients. They are part of the Shop Small movement in the Philippines initiated by American Express and BDO
The pandemic turned the world on its head, and its repercussions can be felt across all levels, from the personal to the communal. And while devastating, the pandemic, however, has also given light to a clearer sense of purpose and community in people and businesses. Compassion, indeed, overflows.
Real Food was built on these very values of community and service. In fact, when partners Bea Lhuillier, Honey Almendral, Nicole Fandino, and Katrina Mañosa established RealFood in 2016, they sought to create a space where they could support farmers and other small suppliers, while bringing together the local community through organic, responsibly-sourced food and other ingredients.
“We wanted to open an organic grocery store (one central location) that we (mothers) could just go to instead of having to order ingredients from different suppliers on our own,” begins Nicole Fandino and Honey Almendral. At Real Food, you can find organic produce, healthy snacks and desserts, delicious artisanal goods, and so much more.
“Real Food was definitely a passion project,” shares the owners. “We were dreaming of a place like it—a lovely brick and mortar shop where we could go to get all our favorite clean, healthy, organic, local, food finds.”
As the “friendly neighborhood grocer,” Real Food is all about community. And so when the pandemic hit, Real Food immediately thought of how to help their people, from their staff to their suppliers. They ramped up their efforts to attend to all of the needs of their people and help them navigate the crisis, too.
To address the lockdowns and the dwindling foot traffic to their stores, Real Food boosted their online presence and strengthened their ecommerce site. Allowing their patrons to continue to shop from them, Real Food also offered nationwide delivery. “Thankfully, we were able to keep our suppliers close, our staff healthy, and, as a bonus, gain new customers,” beams the owners. Real Food has stores in Alabang and Taguig, and both continue to operate under the new safety and sanitation protocols. They will also open their third branch soon in Rockwell.
When it comes to hurdling the challenges of the pandemic, the owners share that the most vital lesson that they’ve learned so far is to “stay flexible, adjust quickly, and learn how to pivot when things don't go as planned.”
When it comes to navigating the crisis, Honey and Nicole highlight that the only way to move forward is by working together and making a commitment to leave no person behind. This is most true for local shops and businesses. “It's always important to support small operations, not just during a pandemic. Small, local businesses are the backbone of a healthy community. We keep people employed, we serve our neighborhood's needs, and, on a larger scale, we support many, many micro enterprises,” says Real Food owners.
In these challenging times, you, too, can do your part like Real Food and help local businesses bounce back.
Use your BDO-issued American Express Cards to pay for purchases from participating Shop Small merchants such as Real Food and earn 5x Rewards until August 31, 2021. With over 1,000 merchant locations, ranging from retail shops, restaurants, and specialty stores, reward points earned can be used to redeem a reward of choice from a selection of gift certificates, gadgets, appliance, air miles and more.
When you shop, you help not only businesses, but entire communities. Help sustain livelihoods and Shop Small.
For more details, visit https://www.americanexpress.com/en-ph/network/business/shop-small/