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ESTHER FARMS INC.

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Proposal

Prepared by
Jedi Bentillo

Submitted to:
Professor Sharone Mae Clapiz, LLB

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Executive Summary
I.

Business and General Information


1. Vision and Mission
2. Company Core Values
II. Market Assessment
III. Corporate Governance
i. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
1. Proposals/Projects/Programs
a. Corporate Social Environment Responsibility (CSER) Officer and
Department Creation
i. Corporate Governance (CG) Practices
ii. Sustainability Reporting using Global Reporting Initiatives
(GRI)
iii. Gender Sensitivity Training
iv. Special Program for Employment for Students
v. Sport Development Program
vi. Annual Employee Tree Planting Program
vii. Supply Chain CSR Practices
viii. Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP)
Membership
ix. Whistle-Blowing Policy
b. Esther Farmer's Foundation
i. Social Work and Agriculture Scholarship Programs
ii. Adopt-a-school program
iii. Market Development Program
iv. Fruit Trees Development Program
v. Harvest-Gabay Expo
c. Organic Fertilizer Processing Plant Stations
d. Research and Development (R&D) Centers
i. DOST-JSTA Geospatial Data Sharing System for Disaster
Management Joint Project
ii. Unified Enterprise GEO-special Information System
(Farmer Registry System)
iii. Training/Capability Building Seminars
IV. CSR Projects/Programs Distinguished
V. Coordinated Government Agencies
VI. Financing Partners
References
Appendices

LIST OF TABLES
Table(s)
Table 1 SEC: Duties to the Stakeholders
Table 2 Comparison of Global Reporting Initiative and
Integrated Reporting Framework
Table 3 Physical Accomplishment, Financial Utilization, and
Amount Utilization per Person of Emergency Employment
for Displaced Workers and their Dependents Under the
Comprehensive Livelihood and Emergency Employment
Program (CLEEP)
Table 4 CSER Projects/Programs Distinguished
Table 5 Landbank: Agricultural Value Chain- Business Models

LIST OF FIGURES
Figure (s)
Figure 1 Consumer Preference: Food Safety
Figure 2 Philippine Exports: Singapore as Trade Partner
Figure 3 Board Gender Diversity in Philippine Publicly-listed Companies
Figure 4 Landbank: Food Supply Chain Program

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
Esther Farms Inc. supplies to various agriculture and fruit products to the malls
and restaurants across the Philippines. Existing 25 years in the agriculture and
distribution industry, Esther Farms Inc. adopts Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
practices conforming into Securities Exchange Commission's Corporate Governance
(CG) establishing a Whistle Blowing Policy, and Created Shared Value (CSV) projects
with an allotment of Php 300,000,000.00 in total. The establishment of CSR
infrastructure projects: Esther Foundation Inc., Organic Fertilizer Processing Plant
Stations and Research and Development (R&D) centers (which will help provide soil
testing free services for partner farmers) across Mindanao and the country. Through the
Foundation will provide scholarships and will serve as a CSR arm of the company,
officially host and assist CSR activities, fun runs, and tree-development programs.

I. BUSINESS AND GENERAL INFORMATION


Esther Farms Inc. was incorporated on March 3, 1992, in the Philippines.
1. Vision
To be the leading agriculture producer and logistics service, and support
solutions to all our constituents in the country, and the world.
Mission
To be a platform for collaboration in the agriculture network and
recognized as a global leader promoting environment and business
sustainability, through research, and collaborative engagements.
2. Company Core Values
Integrity
Maturity

Perseverance
People

Objectives
Become a leading supplier and distributor of quality and healthy products
Reach the point of sustainable profitability.
Promote Simple and healthy living standards

II. MARKET ASSESSMENT


Food safety and security, according to a recent survey in Asia, is one of the major
considerations by consumers in our consumer-centric and hyper-connected
market. Placing Agriculture and logistics corporations in a strong position in
todays market.

Figure 1. Philippine Trade And Training Center -Singapore (2016). Food and Agribusiness Opportunities In Asean.
Davao Agri-Trade Expo 2016. p.14

Recognizing opportunities as Singapore continues to be the countries trading


partner.
Figure 2. Exports

Source: Philippine Trade And Training Center -Singapore (2016). Food and
Agribusiness Opportunities In Asean. Davao Agri-Trade Expo 2016. p.10

III. CORPORATE GOVERNANCE


i. Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
Proposals/Projects/Programs
1. Corporate Social Environment Responsibility (CSER) Officer and
Department Creation
The CSER OFFICER
Hiring a CSER officer that will have the following skills:
Business skills, impact and vision decision making,
leadership, commercial awareness, IT innovation, strategic
awareness, problem solving
Communication, Influencing and People Skills adaptability,
empathy, developing others and self, presence and softer
people skills, open minded, has integrity, political awareness,
can build teams, partnership & stakeholder relations, and can
harness diversity
Professional and technical skills technical expertise,
understanding impacts, internal consultancy, selling the
business case, understanding human rights and society, and
implementing activities and sustainability reporting.
The following will be the CSER officers responsibilities:
Report to management regarding the plans and programs
implementations of CSR; set meetings with the top
management to solicit the specific goals
Prepare training modules for employees preparation for the
various CSR programs to be collaborated and conducted
Create and maintain partnership relations with intermediaries
such as charities and organizations to be able to participate in
CSR activities
Monitor the progress of CSR Programs for reporting to
management

The CSER DEPARTMENT


This department will focus on the following:
Ensure that the company is complying with the standard Government
requirements in its business operations.
Arrange corporate social responsibilities programs/ activities.
Coordinate closely and monitor various CSR program infrastructure
projects and programs.
Physical Performance Reporting and Physical Evaluation Reporting for
each project or activity.

Programs/Activities under the CSER Department


a. Corporate Governance (CG) Practices
The Company adopts the practices prescribed by the Securities and
Exchange Commission (SEC) as corporate governance practices that
relate to CSR, which are effective Redress for violation of stakeholders
Rights, employee participation, anti-corruption programs, whistle blowing
policy and Creating Shared Value (CSV) as new Corporate Social
Responsibility, respectively.
Table 1. SEC: Duties to the Stakeholders

Source: SEC (2015). Philippine Corporate Governance Blueprint 2015: Building a Stronger Corporate
Governance Framework.

b. Sustainability Reporting using Global Reporting Initiatives (GRI)


Sustainability reporting enables organizations to consider the impacts of a
wide range of sustainability issues, enabling them to be more transparent
about the risks and opportunities they face. A sustainability report presents
the organizations values and governance model, and demonstrates the
link between its strategy and its commitment to sustainable global
economy. Sustainability reporting can be considered synonymous with
other terms for non-financial reporting: triple bottom line reporting, CSR
reporting, etc. (SEC, 2015).
The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) suits best in our industry as it is a
well established global metric that is basically about reporting and
disclosure standards for companies submitting environment, social, and
government (ESG) reports.
Table 2. Comparison of Global Reporting Initiative and
Integrated Reporting Framework

Source: SEC (2015). Philippine Corporate Governance Blueprint 2015: Building a Stronger
Corporate Governance Framework

Due to CSR adoption by organizations has led to the creation of indexes


that rank business performance from ESG (environment, social and
governance) perspective (Elsdon, 2013, 46). Also SEC (2015) revealed
that foreign intuitional investors focused more on investee companies with
sustainability reports.
The Company adopts Sustainability reporting using Global Reporting
Initiative (GRI), to evaluate the various internal and external CSR projects
and activities as effective metrics, as one of the CSER department main
function. Adopting these metrics not only provide a list of CSR activities
geared toward various aspects for relative social development in
agriculture, but also help convey transparency and evaluate practices and
projects to continue in the future.
c. Gender Sensitivity Training

As one of Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) prescribed one


best practice is to practice the principle of fair treatment to all stakeholders
(SEC, 2015, 22). Gender Sensitivity Trainings are included to emphasize
the importance of using gender fair language and gender equality. This
training will be conducted by both the CSER and HR Departments, for all
employees.
A survey conducted by SEC (2015) revealed that only 36% among
Publicly-Listed Companies composed a mix of male and female board
members.
Figure 3. Board Gender Diversity in Philippine Publicly-listed Companies

Source: SEC (2015). Philippine Corporate Governance Blueprint 2015: Building a Stronger Corporate
Governance Framework

d. Special Program for Employment for Students


Labor Employment Partnership similar like the Special Program for
Employment for Students (SPES) under the Republic Act 7323, with the
public sector, will be engaged by the Company.
As various infrastructure projects are completed, specifically Esther
Famers Foundation, Research and Development Centers and Organic
Fertilizer Processing Plant Stations, additional labor force are needed for
the designated locations. The Company coordinates with the Department
of Agriculture (DA), and Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) for
additional employment, offering part-time job positions for deserving
students.
Table 3. Physical Accomplishment, Financial Utilization, and Amount
Utilization per Person of Emergency Employment for Displaced Workers
and their Dependents under the Comprehensive Livelihood and
Emergency Employment Program (CLEEP)

e. Sport Development Program


Source: Study of Government Interventions for Employment Generation in Private Sectors.
Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PDIS). Discussion Paper Series 2014-28

The Philippine Sports Commission, as provided in Republic Act 6847


encourages a sports-for-all agenda, which aims to formulized, develop
and promote sports for all Filipinos. Also aims to promote a mindset of not
only being physically fit but also mental toughness, discipline,
determination, and dedication, through sports. Sports attributing to
collective enjoyment in sports further resulting to physical-mental fitness,
values formation, and character-building and social integration (PSP,
2011).
Moreover, Section 6-B of RA 6847 encourages wide participation of all
sectors, government and private, in amateur sports promoting and
development. The Company integrates annual sports activities particularly,
basketball and badminton activities for all of its employees and
constituents inviting a yearly fitness activity for all. The Corporate Social
Environment Responsibility (CSER) and Human Resource (HR)
Departments are tasked to organize and facilitate the sports program.

f. Annual Employee Tree Planting Program


Tree planting is recognized worldwide as a common and direct solution for
climate change intervention in urban and rural areas. The Final Paris
Climate Agreement strongly recognizes and promotes planting of trees
and forest of every kind, from urban jungles to endemic forests and is
recently gaining a strong movement (FEED, 2015). The Company
organize annual tree planting activities particularly, by all of its employees
and constituents inviting a community and environment exposure for all.
The Corporate Social Environment Responsibility (CSER) and are tasked
to organize and coordinate with the Department of Agriculture (DA) and
Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).
g. Supply Chain CSR Practices
The Company adopts various applicable supply chain CSR practices that
involves not buying agricultural products sourced from illegal deforested
areas, from companies reported with unfair labor practices and does not
meet the supply chain standards. Relatively, the company aims to provide
and educate clean practices to leverage and improve sustainability
performance an also increasingly sought for by todays corporations.
Demand for clean-tech expertise is growing in the Asian Region, providing

strong prospects for start-ups and external firms to expand operations


(Racelis, 2016, 27).
Utilizing solar power to promote clean energy saving practices which are
also emphasized as an attractive sustainable business practice will be
slowly adopted. Rapid increase in energy demand due to economic
development and population growth as well as environmental concerns,
have led to shift in energy policy in virtually all developed countries and
many developed countries toward adopting clean energy sources such
wind and solar power (Racelis, 2016, 29).

h. Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP) Membership


The Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP) provides end-to-end
services in project management, consulting and grant management. The
organization was established in 1970, and is the largest business sectorled social development organization in the Philippines committed to
poverty reduction. Composed of 271 large, small and medium scale
member companies have been uplifting the lives of Filipinos through
programs on Health, Education, Environment and Livelihood and
Enterprise Development (HEEL). PBSP advocates for stronger corporate
citizenship by influencing the business sector to integrate Corporate Social
Responsibility (CSR) into their core business and apply business
strategies such as Inclusive Business and the Collective Impact
Framework in addressing poverty and other big societal challenges.
The Company aims to become one of the contributing companies in the
organization addressing CSR for social development in the Agricultural
industry. By being part of the organization can also provide more
opportunities for joint collaborative efforts with other member companies
to engage in social development. Also may provide more opportunities for
our farmers & partners in social welfare and development.
i. Whistle-Blowing Policy
Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) mandates with a comply or
explain approach to companies to provide a whistle-blowing policy that
allows employees and other stakeholders to freely communicate their
concerns without fear of any retribution or repercussion to the Board.

The Company adopts the policy, as this is considered as a best practice


that provides officer and employees as well as other relevant stakeholders
should be able to communicate freely and responsibly any concerned
knowledge they may have about illegal and unethical practices within the
corporation. Their right to communicate with the Board should not be
compromised in any way and should be strongly protected by a whistle
blowing policy (SEC, 2015, 24).

2. Esther Farmer's Foundation


The previous projects involved internal stakeholders involvement and
corporate best practices adopted, the foundation serves as the official
CSR-arm of the company. The Foundation extends formal scholarships to
partner farmers and especially their children, adopting-a-school, donating
bookings, tables and chairs, host events such as the Harvest-Gabay Expo
and other future charitable events.

Programs/Activities under the Foundation


i. Social Work and Agriculture Scholarship Programs
Beneficiaries of these scholarship programs are targeted at the
children of the farms contributing their volume of supplies to the
company. Memorandum of Agreements (MOA) with Universities with
BS in Social Work and BS in Agriculture programs will be engaged.
The beneficiaries of the program will also have contractual obligations
to be directly absorbed and work for the company upon completion of
studies.
ii. Adopt-a-school program
The Foundation targets to adopt 5 schools in the Davao, Bukidnon,
and Cagayan de Oro, to provide free education to elementary pupils,
donate tables, chairs and other better facilities to these corresponding
underprivileged schools.
iii. Market Development Program

The Foundation aims to provide market development for various highvalue crops, providing facilities for orientations packaging and branding
strategies for partnered small to medium sized growers or farmers.
iv. Fruit Trees Development Program
With coordination with the Department of Agriculture (DA) Pursuant to
RA 7900, the High Value Crop will supply and help with the production
and distribution of free seedling to partner farms.
v. Harvest-Gabay Expo
The Harvest - Gabay Expo provides a free avenue for farmers part of
the Fruit Trees development Programs to exhibit and showcase to
interested buyers connecting them to Small and Medium Enterprises.
Through Foundations programs in education, and environment, the Company
hopes to make a difference in the communities it serves.
3. Organic Fertilizer Processing Plant Stations
Organic Farming practices and products are highly promoted by the Company
and also an increasing demand in the market and food safety and security
resulted to 7I% in the recent consumer preference survey in Asia (PTTC,
2016). The Company aims to construct organic fertilizer processing plant
stations across Mindanao to promote organic fertilizers and provide services
in the area.
4. Research and Development (R&D) Centers
The National Economic Development Authority (NEDA), the socio-economic
planning arm of the Philippines, emphasized the need for the country to invest
more in R&D to boost the competitiveness of local industries, particularly
manufacturing which is deemed crucial in achieving inclusive growth (Cruz,
2015, 55).
A country's gross expenditures for R&D is closely associated with its GDP per
capita, and thus implying the crucial role played by R&D in national progress.
Yet Philippine investment in R&D has stayed at a level of around 0.11 to 0.14
percent of GDP, which is among the lowest is Asia, according to the country's

Chief Economic Planner Secretary Arsenio Balisacan himself. Such figure is


way below one percent GDP average for R&D among developing countries,
as determined UNESCO (World Bank, 2014; Cruz, 2015, 55).
The 23rd Regional World Economic Forum (WEF) held in Manila in May 2015
revealed that "research on the link between R&D and economic growth
momentum is massive and judicious public investment in knowledge in
human and intellectual capital" or the so called supra-structure (PadillaConception et. al., 2014; Cruz, 2015, 56).
Because of which, the Company invests heavily in Research and
Development (R&D) Centers, constructed into various locations in Mindanao,
to promote and provide free soil analysis to nearby a farms helping them in
their inclusive growth.
Programs/Activities under the R&D Centers
Public-Private Partnerships, otherwise known as PPP, is a broad term
to describe a "special feature of governance today". Wherein the
government partners with the private sector to achieve sustainable
development and be efficient in its delivery of quality public service
with managerial and technical capabilities (Rashed et. al., 2011; Dela
Cruz, 2015, 130). PPP and its framework are able to serve as a
resolution to the problem of insufficiency of funds, coupled with
corruption and political immaturity (Dela Cruz, 2015, 130).
The Company invests in installation and commitment to various Joint
Projects below to better serve the community through disaster risk
management and prevention:
i. DOST-JSTA Geospatial Data Sharing System for Disaster
Management Joint Project
ii. Unified Enterprise GEO-special Information System (Farmer
Registry System)

iii. Training/Capability Building Seminars

The various Research and Development Centers will serve as avenue


for instruction and free Skill based trainings/capability building
seminars. Speakers will be invited from Department of Agriculture and
various Universities to conduct free seminars for interested farmers
and other community partners.

IV. CSER PROJECTS/PROGRAMS DISTINGUISHED

Table 4. CSER PROJECTS/PROGRAMS DISTINGUISHED

V.

COORDINATED GOVERNMENT AGENCIES


Department of Agriculture (DA) programs
provide subsidies and various to aid in our
social development works. Tree seedlings
outsource and projects contracted are
coordination with this government partner. Other
main government partners previously mentioned
are Department of Labor and Employment
(DOLE), Department of Science and Technology
(DOST).

VI. FINANCING PARTNER


Landbank provides flexible financing options and business models for varied types
of loan programs, and will be the Companys financing partner.
Figure 4. Landbank: Food Supply Chain Program

Source: Charlotte Conde (2016). Landbank: Finance Counseling on Innovative Windows &Programs, and Access on
Market Models for Financing. Davao Agri-Trade Expo 2016.

Table 5. Landbank: Agricultural Value Chain- Business Models

Source: Charlotte Conde (2016). Landbank: Finance Counseling on Innovative Windows &Programs, and Access on
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investment in knowledge supra-structure. 4PKSS, Philippines Korea in Changing
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Charlotte Conde (2016). Landbank: Finance Counseling on Innovative Windows


& Programs, and Access on Market Models for Financing. Davao Agri-Trade
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Opportunities In Asean. Davao Agri-Trade Expo 2016. p.10

APPENDIX A
General Budget Proposal