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Dole Philippines, Incorporated (Dolefil), part of SoCCSKSarGen Experience Tour 2014

Dole Philippines, Incorporated (Dolefil), is a fully integrated plantation and industrial facility situated in Polomolok, South Cotabato in Mindanao. A tour in a company that provides healthy, high quality, and competitive products to consumers here and abroad, is part of this year's SoCCSKSarGen Experience Tour - Day 2 ( story HERE).

Dole Philippines, Incorporated (Dolefil) , is  one of the largest industrial firms in the country, when it comes to growing, processing, and exporting fresh and canned pineapple. It is located at Barangay Cannery Site and provides job opportunities not only to the Polomolok, South Cotabato folks but also to the residents of nearby provinces like North Cotabato, Bukidnon, and Sarangani, to name a few.

We were welcomed by Ms Gwyn Ann Palima of Dolefil and had a small talk about Dolefil's mission vision as well as its products, which were laid out on a long table. Most of their products are for export and are especially requested by  countries in Asia, Europe, and USA.

Then we had a tour of the heart and soul of their operations, wearing our Protective Personal Equipment (PPE) which is part of  Dolefil's Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) for anyone entering the processing plant.

We saw how clean, secure, and organized the plant was. We were like kids who were awed by every step of the production process- the unloading of  truckfuls of pineapples and other fruits, the washing of various fruits in a big pool of water, the mechanized sorting of fruits according to size, the paring done thru customized peeling machines and the tedious task of manually putting the desired cut fruits in containers. We also watched how special product requests like Dippers (fruits coated with dark chocolate) were made.
And yes, most of the fruits come from their vast pineapple plantation in Mindanao.

We were delighted when we were given the chance  to try and take home the products which are solely made for export like the Fruits & Bits (Pineapple Coco) and Strawberry & Banana Dippers. The Dippers are quite unforgettable and the fruits tasted fresh despite the chocolate coating. The huge freezer inside the plant wherein the bananas and other fruits  are stored to maintain its freshness probably did the trick.

We weren't allowed to take any photo inside the processing plant because it is part of their SOP, which is understandable considering the secrecy in the formulation and manufacturing of food products. But despite that, I will try to update this post and share with you photos that will  prove just how clean and secure the plant is.

The plant tour was undoubtedly a great way to witness how the best-tasting pineapple products are made. Now, I appreciate the Dole Pineapple fruits and canned juices more than ever, knowing how much human effort and efficient technology goes with each and every can.

After that splendid plant tour, we went to Dolefil's Clubhouse Kalsangi, an exclusive facility and community only for the executives, top management or the top brass of Dolefil. We were lucky to be invited for a 'merienda' and felt that we were part of a privileged class. The atmosphere inside is really different, as if I was transported to another world, ahem... The vast outlay of towering pine trees surrounding the area and the wide landscape of a well-maintained 9-hole golf course against a backdrop of a breathtaking, picturesque view will be something I will probably remember for a very long time.

Thank you so much Dole Philippines, Incorporated (Dolefil), for treating us not just as visitors but as part of your corporate family. The guided tour of your processing plant, the meaningful and informative chats with the supervisors and employees, and that rare chance to behold the Dolefil exclusive community and clubhouse, are indeed very much appreciated and welcome.

A big thumbs up too, for maintaining the freshness of your products not just for Filipinos but also for the whole world; and for providing jobs and livelihood opportunities for thousands of Filipinos ever since your company planted its roots in the Philippines more than half a century ago.

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