Text and Images by JULES VIVAS
Competition organizer Marissa Dames
Aimed to espouse a new culinary philosophy of progression that allows student chefs to shine, the Oro Plato Masa Nationwide Culinary competition is a CSR project initiated by Marissa Dames, president and COO of DTC Promos Inc. The competition that grants Filipino students more exposure to the culinary scene, was officially launched at the Golden Phoenix Hotel in Manila.
A winner of a prestigious nationwide cooking match, and a veteran in the food and marketing industry for the past 25 years, Dames explained the idea behind the event name as she said, “Oro which is gold, stands for the highest standard of excellence aspired for by chefs. Plato is the plate or stage by which the student contestants can showcase their passion, talent, and skills in creating culinary masterpieces. And, Masa is the heart and soul of this project. Masa is a word that could both mean dough and the masses.”
Susie Achacoso Cruz, president of Gifted Minds PR and marketing consultancy
She continued, “We look at the students as the ‘dough’ or assets that we can work with and support. Our goal is to allow each contestant to rise to his or her full potential through this competition and of course, we will try to reach as many students and schools as possible.”
Dames added, “This competition seeks to give more schools a chance to send participants who will benefit from this platform and allow the latter to jump start their careers with resources that can help build their own food business.”
Students can form a team of two members from the same school or program and participate in one of the two categories: the Ulam (savory), and Minatamis (dessert). Winners will get Lenovo laptops, kitchen equipment, and products from competition brand partners and sponsors.
Marissa Dames, COO and president of DTC Promos Inc., with Chef Ellen Rivera, ASEAN master assessor for food production and chairperson of the board of judges of Oro Plato Masa
Presented by SM Supermalls, the Department of Education (DepEd), the Department of Tourism (DOT) through its Tourism Promotions Board, The Manila Bulletin, Metro Channel, Business Mirror, Unilever Food Solutions (UFS), Lenovo, and Masflex, the contest is open to Filipino students who are at least 16 years old by Sept. 1, 2019, and are enrolled in a cooking course/program recognized by the government.
To join, fill out an entry form downloadable from www.facebook.com/oroplatomasa.
Deadline for registration is on Jan. 15, 2020. 18 teams will be chosen to compete in the grand finals on Feb. 22, 2020 at the SM Mall of Asia Music Hall.
For more information, visit oroplatomasa’s Facebook account, or their website www.dtcpromos.com.ph.