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CITEM champions sustainability in their new signature event

Sustainability Solutions Exchange promotes the shift towards sustainable consumption and production among local brands and micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the Philippines

To contribute to the advancement of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs), the Center for International Trade Expositions and Missions (CITEM) launched its newest signature brand, Sustainability Solutions Exchange (SSX), through a three-day online event of the same name from March 23 to 25, 2022.

The trade event and conference encompassed a multichannel approach to sustainable development—a brand with a global panel, an online platform connecting businesses to vetted sustainable suppliers both locally and abroad, and support programs that facilitated the transition to sustainable processes for micro, small, and medium scale enterprises (MSMEs).

Central to SSX are its digital expo and online resource hub, Sustainability.ph. The former, which recently concluded today, facilitated conversations and exchange of ideas among leading experts and advocates of sustainability. The latter seeks to amplify the insights from the digital expo by providing an always-on one-stop shop offering multiple touchpoints for the sustainability sector.

“Our goal is to shift Philippine businesses to practice sustainability in their supply chain and mitigate their impact on the environment. We are confident in this transition considering the growing demand of conscious local and international consumers which presents great opportunities for sustainable Philippine businesses to thrive in,” said CITEM Executive Director Pauline Suaco-Juan. 

Hosted by UNEP Goodwill Ambassador and Founder of Communities Organized for Resource Allocation (CORA) Antoinette Taus, the digital event featured policymakers, entrepreneurs, business leaders, sustainability experts, and advocates from the local and international sustainability community, including Dr. Selva Ramachandran of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP Philippines), Deputy Speaker Loren Legarda from the Lone District of Antique, DTI Undersecretary Ruth Castelo, Mr. Kelly Bird, the Country Director of Asian Development Bank (ADB), Mr. Filippo Gavazzeni of Milan Urban Food Policy Pact, Journalist Ms. Whitney Bauck of Unwrinkling, Mr. Georg Platzer of IKEA, Ms. Amelia Juhl of IDEO Tokyo, Ms. Reese Fernandez of Rags2Riches, Ms. Pacita “Chit” Juan of Echostore, Arch. Christopher Dela Cruz of Philippine Green Building Council, and many others.

During the first day, themed Solutions Today: Goals & Strategies, experts talked about sustainability in the Philippines, responsible consumption and production, and how Philippine businesses can contribute to the sustainability agenda featuring a series of panel discussions

The second day focused on the food sector, highlighting Food Systems for Tomorrow. Experts covered trends in the food sector, as well as sustainable food production practices.

SSX concentrated on the lifestyle industry on its last day, focusing on New Living & Consumption. The session focused on keynote and panel discussions on ethical businesses, responsible innovation, and products for conscious consumers.

Moreover, the expo housed several zones that highlighted different sustainable solutions, products, and services. The Sustainable Solutions and Advocates zone presented packaging solutions, green technology, sustainability programs, and more. The Marketplace zone showcased  businesses from both the food and lifestyle sectors. The food category presented natural and healthy food, food supplements, and organic farms. Lastly, the lifestyle category housed a wide selection of products such as personal care items, accessories, home decor, and furnishings.

Meanwhile, Sustainability.ph made its debut as a hub for stories, news, and resources for participants looking for ways to make sustainable choices everyday or to lead their business’ sustainability transformation. On the site, data stories will be available in a more visually engaging format to help visitors digest information easily. The Solutions portion of the website presents itself as a directory of suppliers offering sustainable products or solutions, vetted by a panel of experts and are subject to continuing compliance requirements.

As CITEM partners with more international organizations geared towards achieving a more circular world economy, a growing list of local and international events will be made available on the website, helping the local community be more in touch with the pulse of the global sustainability community.