Ajinomoto Philippines launches SariCycle Program

Engaging in building sustainable communities in partnership with BEST and Quezon City

(From L-R) Mr. Ernie Carlos, APC Chief Sustainability Officer, Ms. Isabelita Mercado, BEST President, Honorable Mayor Joy Belmonte, Mr. Koichi Ozaki, APC President, Aji Panda Mascot and Mr. Jan Vincent Mercado, BEST Senior Vice President.

January 8, 2024, Quezon City, Philippines—Ajinomoto Philippines Corporation (APC), in partnership with Basic Environmental Systems and Technologies (BEST) leads the Filipino community to a more sustainable lifestyle with the launch of the SariCycle Program through an event held in Quezon City (QC) Hall grounds attended by 150 sari-sari store owners based in Quezon City. 

The flagship program is poised to trailblaze in Quezon City, in collaboration with the Climate Change and Environmental Sustainability Department and the Gender and Development Council Office of the QC local government unit.

The event was hosted by DJ Mama Emma of Barangay LS 97.1, attended by Ms. Isabelita Mercado BEST President, Mr. Jan Vincent Mercado, BEST Senior Vice President, Mr. Koichi Ozaki, APC President, and Honorable Mayor Joy Belmonte who gave their respective messages during the program boosting the morale of the sari-sari store owners attendees. 

The SariCycle program is a product of APC’s commitment to create shared value that the Filipino people can benefit from, most especially the communities who continue to be  key players in the success of the Ajinomoto brand in enhancing the quality of life of its consumers through its innovative products. 

“With the SariCycle Program, we aim not only to reduce and manage plastic waste but also support the very communities that have been our loyal partners and consumers for more than 65 years now.” shared by APC Chief Sustainability Officer Ernie Carlos.

With SariCycle, sari-sari stores and market stalls will be given the opportunity to participate in an incentivized or reward system driven program that aims to manage plastic waste through a plastic collection system. 

“The sari sari and market stall owners or the Sari Cyclers as we call them will receive environmental points for the flexible plastics collected.  There will be additional points for Ajinomoto products collected.  These points can be redeemed to purchase basic necessities in partner establishments.” Further explained by E. Carlos.

In fact, the inclusive plastic collection program will also encourage patrons of the sari-sari stores to own their share in helping build a sustainable community for themselves, which will later inspire neighboring communities as well to take action in achieving a zero-waste environment. 

SariCycle is a simple, feasible, and effective program that ultimately elevates the lives of the Filipinos beginning in specific communities with its pilot launching. With the launch event being the first step into this program, the following steps will include plastic segregation from the collected plastic waste such as plastic sachets,  from Ajinomoto brand products. The collected plastic waste will then be deposited in different collection points all over Quezon City with corresponding Environmental Points (EP) depending on the weight of the collected plastic waste. 

The SariCycle Program aims to reach more cities and support hundreds and thousands more sari-sari store and market stall owners. APC, together with BEST, and the Quezon City Local Government are optimistic that this is just the beginning of a long-term commitment to push for a Zero-Waste environment that takes on an inclusive approach in realizing avenues and new platforms to champion sustainable development and contribute to the circular economy while building more sustainable communities. 

(From L-R) Kiff Buyoc, APC Sustainability Executive, Mr. Jan Vincent Mercado, BEST Senior Vice President, Ms. Akiko Une, APC Director for R&D and Quality Assurance, Mr. Makoto Tanabe, APC Senior Vice President, Mr. Hironori Aoki, APC Director for Marketing, Sales and Public Relations, Ms. Andrea Villaroman, QC Climate Change and Environmental Sustainability Department Head, Mr. Koichi Ozaki, APC President, Honorable Mayor of QC Joy Belmonte, Ms. Isabelita Mercado, BEST President, Mr. Ernie Carlos, APC Chief Sustainability Officer, Mr. Mike Victorio, APC Regional Sales Department General Manager, Mr. Dennis Garcia, APC Regional Sales Department Head, Mr. Fidel Biag, APC Regional Sales Manager – Metro Manila and Lizza Santiago, APC Strategic Communications Specialist.

As the first batch of SariCyclers in Quezon City take on the pioneering participant roles for the SariCycle program, APC is more than positive that the neighboring cities in Metro Manila will also be as excited as they are to achieving more feats in taking care of the environment as they continue to promote better quality of life.