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Local Journalists Encouraged to Join 11th Bright Leaf Awards

Local Journalists Encouraged to Join 11th Bright Leaf Awards

Local media practitioners are encouraged to submit entries for this year’s 11th Bright Leaf Agriculture Journalism Awards.

The Bright Leaf Agriculture Journalism Awards is an initiative of the Philip Morris Fortune Tobacco Corp. (PMFTC) Inc. that aims to support agriculture and honor Filipino journalists by giving recognition to outstanding work in media that promotes the development of and creates awareness on issues relating to Philippine Agriculture.

The competition was formally launched in Dumaguete City on July 20 attended by members of Dumaguete media.

Although PMFTC Inc. is a known cigarette manufacturer in the Philippines, its Director for External Affairs Bayen Elero-Tinga cited that the company is connected with the agriculture sector having around 4, 800 tobacco farmers all over the country directly contracted by PMFTC.

We could say that aside from being a cigarette manufacturer and distributor, we consider ourselves as an agriculture company,” Tinga said during the press briefing.

Being an agriculture company, we believe that, to a great extent, the public also has to be educated on what’s happening in the agriculture industry. By having the Bright Leaf Agriculture Journalism Awards, we want to encourage journalists from all over the country to write about the challenges that are facing the industry and the opportunities also,” Tinga added.

There are 10 categories under the competition which include: Agriculture Story of the Year, Agriculture Photo of the Year which looks for the, Tobacco Story of the Year, Tobacco Photo of the Year, Best Television Program or Segment, Best Radio Program or Segment, Best Agricultural News Story National, Best Agriculture News Story Regional, Best Agriculture Feature Story National, and Best Agriculture Feature Story Regional.

Only entries that were published, aired or broadcasted from September 1, 2016 to August 31, 2017 will be accepted by the contest organizers.

Entries can be in Filipino, English or any regional language.

However, contestants should send an English translation of their work or report if the entry submitted is not in English language.

Journalists or photographers may submit several entries for consideration but only one entry may be submitted per category.

Entries can be submitted through e-mail, courier or at the Bright Leaf website.

Winners shall receive cash prizes, premium items and all-expense paid trip in an Asian Country.

For the past 10 years, print, TV, radio, and photo journalists have actively and eagerly participated in this competition and PMFTC Communications Manager Didet Danguilan-Santiago disclosed that during the early years, most of the winners came from Luzon but starting 2010, there are winners coming from Visayas and Mindanao areas.

Santiago invites journalists in Negros Oriental to participate in the competition.

She said topics are not just limited to crops but can also be related to fisheries and livestock.

The deadline for submission of entries is on September 1, 2017 and winners will be announced on November 17, 2017.

Journalists who are interested to join are advised to visit their website to view the complete mechanics of the competition or contact the secretariat at 0917-9771153 or 0917-849-7724 or send an e-mail to brightleaf2017@gmail.com.

Asked if the Bright Leaf Awards is on track in achieving its objective, Santiago said: “For awareness, yes. We have promoted and we have shown po iyong mga story. For awareness we know we have gone so far in going around cities and provinces. By the end of the day, gusto pa rin to really highlight the importance of agriculture.

Santiago hopes that through this initiative, media practitioners will be encouraged to report more stories on agriculture.

It’s not (boring), it’s beautiful going out in the provinces and knowing what’s happening in the barrios among our fisher-folks, our farmers. It is really a great opportunity to really write,” Santiago cited.

Since we are in the provinces and we know there are a lot of good stories in the provinces about agriculture. Let’s write more about it,” she said. (ral/PIA7-Negros Oriental)