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Bettina Osmeña cooks up a healthy pinoy sari-sari store |

Sunday Lifestyle

Bettina Osmeña cooks up a healthy pinoy sari-sari store

Maria Bustamante - The Philippine Star
Bettina Osmeña cooks up a healthy pinoy sari-sari store
Serge Osmeña, who is seeking to regain his Senate seat, and Bettina during one Christmas celebration

MANILA, Philippines — Even when Serge Osmeña is returned to the Senate, don’t expect his wife Bettina to be simply a senator’s wife.

After nine years of nurturing her modest enterprise, Bettina has now truly come into her own and has become a full-fledged, full-time businesswoman. In fact, she is now thinking of opening more branches for her Gourmet Corner, what she describes as a Pinoy sari-sari store offering healthy, ready-to-eat dishes and other products. The store at the San Antonio Plaza in Forbes Park also carries a variety of products from different parts of Metro Manila, even the Philippines.

Party platter of seabass cooked with white wine, tons of olive oil, leeks,onions with clams served with pesto sauce on the side.

Gourmet Corner sells frozen vegetarian dishes and healthy snacks, as well as continental foods. It sells artisanal yogurt, different kinds of longganisa, other regional delicacies and imported items. The late-blooming businesswoman says she is “helping many microentrepreneurs who cook in their homes.”

Gourmet Corner’s clients are mainly people looking for dishes that are healthy and appetizing. Bettina, a cancer survivor, does not believe that healthy food cannot be tasty. She has also developed a loyal clientele of people who do not have the time or cannot cook a filling and appetizing meal, like busy professionals and office workers, housewives and mothers who want something good and ready to eat after a hard day at work or when they are too exhausted to make even the simplest dishes. The dishes Gourmet Corner sells can be kept in the feeezer and prepared quickly and without fuss when needed.

Canapes prepared by Bettina’s chefs for an event they catered.

Now she has added a catering service to her enterprise, training her chefs herself.

Although her business has kept her away from the campaign trail, Bettina does help Serge’s bid to return to the Senate by managing his  campaign logistics from their home and the social media side of Serge’s campaign.

More technology-savvy than her husband, Bettina, who says social media helped a lot in boosting her business, brainstormed with her children and their friends for the very catchy “i-Serge mo” advertising campaign.

A play on the typical response “i-search mo” to people looking for information, “i-Serge mo” appears to have caught on. Mention the name of the candidate and you are likely to hear the phrase.

But while she is helping Serge return to the Senate, Bettina will not get involved in politics. She now has her hands full being an entrepreneur. Bettina says she is now hitting her full stride as a businesswoman and proudly proclaims they have become a two-income family.

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