How long does it take to perfectly blend wine that can satisfy the discriminating taste of customers? Others have concocted special mixtures from experience but it is said that the most special and unique are wines produced by time and fused with science and technology. Such is the story of the Alvendo’s Food Products’ wines.
The Family wine
The Alvendo family in Kalinga is passionate in making wines which started 15 years ago when the family’s matriarch once joined livelihood trainings conducted by a government agency. Since then, her wine production skills were developed and passed on to her children, consequently inspiring them to pursue the wine production business. Now, her children are making their own brand names popular in the wine market.
Ms. Leah Alvendo is an OFW returnee who came back home in 2014. Inspired by her mom and her siblings’ wine processing businesses, she also decided to invest her earnings abroad on fruit wine production. Thus, she established the Alvendo Food Products in the same year in Kalinga. Currently, the firm is producing fruit wines such as bugnay, lemon, guava, guyabano, rambutan, and guava, as well as rice wine carrying the brand, Finezze Fruit Wine.
Fusion of the family wine with S&T
With her eagerness to enhance the firm’s production and product quality, Ms. Alvendo sought the assistance of Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Program (SETUP) of the Department of Science and Technology- Cordillera Administrative Region (DOST-CAR) through its Provincial S&T Center in Kalinga. Her Phase I project titled, “Equipment Upgrading and Improvement of Product Packaging and Labeling of Finezze Wine” was approved in 2017, while the Phase 2 was granted in 2019 with the project titled, “Continuing Improvement of Finezze Wine.
Among the assistance she acquired from DOST-CAR SETUP include technology upgrading, provision of laboratory analysis, and other technical consultancy services. The firm also acquired free training on Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) on Food Safety, training and labeling on product quality improvement, and benchmarking from other wineries.
From those S&T interventions partnered with the firm’s hard work, the Alvendo Food Products has increased its production from 7,000 bottles to 9,000 bottles annually. While the product quality was met, it was also able to develop additional five (5) fruit wine products as well as market expansion. From Tabuk City in Kalinga, Tuguegarao City, and Cagayan, the firm was able to establish 14 additional markets within and outside the region.
Alvendo’s Food Products, a socially responsible enterprise
Giving back to customers and to the society as a whole is always a priority for the firm. It continued to support agriculture and livelihood by providing free seeds collected from processed fruits to farmers for planting with an agreement that they will sell their fruits/berries to the firm, after harvest. This has also sustained and assured the continuous production of the firm as it buys raw materials fresh from farm and in return, farmers can easily sell their products directly without having to tap any middlemen in the market. Moreover, the firm is currently providing a total of 16 direct and indirect employments in the province.
Ms. Alvendo has also joined the #WeWorkAsOne to back COVID-19 frontliners and affected individuals in Kalinga. She has been an instrument for the successful pilot production of alcohol, a project of Alcohol Task Force in Kalinga where the firm is a member, together with DOST-Kalinga and Kalinga State University. She voluntarily lent her equipment be used during the pilot production and provided free trainings on wine fermentation techniques to DOST and KSU staff who are working on the production of alcohol.//FLAA, DOST-CAR