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- AFC's 7107 Eats at Eastwood Mall
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Behind the Softness of Gardenia : A World-Class Bread Manufacturing Plant
When In Manila, if you died and went to bread heaven this is how it would look like :
In this rice-eating country, bread takes on a backseat in our diet. And when Filipinos eat bread, the common notion is that it usually is made from the hands (& sweat?) from your local bakery.
On the otherhand, the recent years have shown a general uptrend in the consumption of the bread loaf. And the brand name Gardenia is slowly becoming a household term.
When you hear Gardenia, it comes with the notion of freshly baked at all times, smells good, tastes even better, feels soft & nutritious. And behind those qualities comes with it a world-class processing plant that has been producing & delivering quality products to us every single day.
Be my guests and take this trip with me to why bread this good can only come from the largest & most advanced large-scale bread manufacturing plant in the country today.
The expansive floor below showcases a state-of-the-art bread factory with highly automated equipment sourced out from the best bakery suppliers from all over the world.
All bread is made without any hands touching them.
Only the finest ingredients are used, nothing less which makes it delicious & healthy.
The walkway on the top part serves as a venue for visitors or children on their field trips to take a look and appreciate how great bread is made.
This is the Gardenia distribution center, it’s the largest in the Philippines and amazingly dispatches 650,000 loaves & buns of bread a day! That would make a distribution & logistics system sophisticated enough to bring fresh bread to each store daily & replace unsold bread on store shelves.
The Gardenia plant is ISO 9001: 2008 certified & HCAPP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) certified – proof that the company strictly adheres to the highest standards of food quality & safety.
Lets get a little personal with our little loaves of bread. From the classic white & wheat bread which we have come to know, it has expanded into the following :
Flavor-Licicous Breads : Black Forest, California Raisin, Chocolate Chip, Double Delights (Ube-Cheese), Double Delights (Choco-Mocha), Butterscotch.
Bunch of Buns : Whole Wheat Buns, Pandesal, Hotdog & Hamburger Buns
Snack & Toast Products : Muffins, Cream Rolls, Toasts (Cinamon, Butter, Garlic, Toasties) & Fun Buns
So you could basically pick a variety that suits you & munch away. But then it gets fun when we go a little gourmet.
Using wheat bread you can make a Spanish Milkfish Sandwich.
With raisin bread you can make a Gardenia Wheat Raisin Ham & Jam Sandwich.
Going a little Japanese? Here’s some Gardenia Tuna Maki Rolls
For Mexican – I never thought you could make Quesadillas with Bread. Just flatten the bread with cheese in between, heat it and put in some salsa dip.
Go creative with desserts with a Gardenia frozen delight (instead of using graham crackers on the bed of a ref cake, use bread)
Or who would’ve thought of making Choco Mocha Rumballs with bread also.
I usually buy a loaf to last me for a week, but by learning all the new recipes my favorite bread can make, I think I’m going to increase it to three.
Behind each successful product is a great team. Below from L-R. Aine De Guzman (Nutritionist), Thea Tan (Marketing Manager), Merlie Barcelos (QA Manager), Jun Umali (President & General Manager), Nestor Constancia (Marketing & Sales Manager) and Cristina Domondon (Manufacturing Head)
The president Mr. Jun Umali holds the vision of Gardenia Bakeries Philippines & makes sure it is properly executed by this team & the whole company to be able to bring us that deliciousness of ‘so good…you can even eat it on its own‘ or ‘masarap kahit walang palaman’ to all Filipinos one bread at a time.
So what is the Gardenia advantage?
- Importance to the 4Ps : Plant, Process, Products, People
- World-class bread manufacturing facility
- Fully automated baking operation untouched by hand
- Largest loaf bread production capacity in the country
Some more quirky things I learned :
- You can actually know what day a bread has been made by the color of the tags. This “G-Lock” system allows customers to make knowledgeable purchases when buying bread.
Tan – Monday
Orange – Tuesday
Yellow – Wednesday
Blue – Thursday
Green – Friday
Red – Saturday
White – Sunday
- They donate 10,000 loaves of bread regularly to charity so if you feel you need to bless others, you can just get in touch with them
- The formulation of Gradenia’s classic white bread : good taste minus the cholesterol, bromate & transfats has even succeeded recommendations set by the Department of Health
- They set the industry standards of displaying bread on an upright position on the store shelves compared to the old way of having it lie flat
- You never leave the Gardenia plant without taking home a piece of bread!
After having gone through all of this, I will never see a Gardenia bread as just another loaf . When In Manila, when you bring home a pack of Gardenia, you are bringing home quality, safety & freshness.
Gardenia Centre, Star Avenue,
Laguna International Industrial Park (LIIP),
Mamplasan, Binan, Laguna
Tel No. (632)889-8890/ (049) 539-1136