Sustainable Procurement Training for the Hospitality Sector

Last August 30, 2019, the Philippine Center for Environmental Protection and Sustainable Development, Inc. (PCEPSDI), under the Transforming Tourism Value Chains (TVC) project, with the support of the Iloilo City Mayor’s Office, delivered a Sustainable Procurement Training for the Hospitality Sector in Iloilo City. This training was developed in accordance with the Country Report on the Assessment of Sustainable Procurement Practices at the National Level, written by Mr. John Paolo Rivera, Ph.D, Project Technical Consultant to the TVC project, and Associate Director of the Asian Institute of Management – Dr. Andrew L. Tan Center for Tourism. The Country Report found that in addressing the gaps of sustainable procurement in the country, tourism stakeholders suggested to be provided with more capacity building and training, together with tools and guidance to support the practice of sustainable procurement, among other findings. 

The training began with a brief overview of the impacts of climate change, as well as recent environmental issues, given by TVC Project Assistant, Ms. Andrea Go. She presented the results and other findings of the country report that was written by Mr. Rivera, who surveyed around 50 tourism enterprises (e.g. hotels, restaurants, MICE establishments, business associations and other tourism professionals) in assessing the current level of sustainable procurement in the country. A case study on El Nido Resorts, a tourism enterprise actually practicing sustainable procurement, was also presented by TVC’s Research Assistant, Mr. Ezekiel Dimagiba.  

Project Officer Mr. Kiko Velhagen then gave a lecture on Procurement Planning, which provided an overview of the basic steps of the process of sustainable procurement. The exercises during this lecture taught the participants to map sustainability impacts of their assigned products throughout the tourism value chain, and to prioritise the issues and responses they envisioned in addressing these impacts. This was followed by a lecture on the basics of Pre-Purchasing given by Green Choice Philippines Project Officer, Ms. Jouelle Nerveza, which showed the participants the significance of defining requirements asked of potential suppliers, and how to identify green products through ecolabelling. 

Dr. Angie Zafra, Executive Director of Strategia Development Research Institute (SDRI), then presented the Local Market Readiness Analysis report made by her team, which aimed to assess the tourism market’s potential responsiveness to an increased demand of sustainable products and services; identify potential threats and opportunities that a shift might create for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) for the local market; and define sustainability criteria for given products and identify means of verification and sustainability standards. 

With the participants having been given some ideas of sustainable criteria, they proceeded to practice writing sustainable specifications for their assigned products. Ms. Nerveza gave a lecture on Purchasing followed by an exercise which showed participants how to evaluate bidders by considering both the products they offer and the background of their companies.  

The next stage of the procurement process, Post-purchasing, was discussed by Mr. Velhagen, who emphasized that drafting contract clauses with the supplier should consider all aspects—environmental, social and economic – and may be monitored through key performance indicators. Fair contract pricing should also be prioritized, as well as having a systematic monitoring and review strategy to ensure supplier performance and compliance. The training was capped off by Research Assistant Ms. Nicole Gomez, who discussed six concrete steps in applying sustainable procurement in participants’ respective establishments. Participants accomplished an exercise on brainstorming which offices or departments could spearhead ensuring sustainable procurement practices in their establishments.

To know more about the project: you can email Mr. Kiko Velhagen,

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