STAR reporters Teddy Molina and Eva Visperas win in the 7th Bright Leaf Annual Journalism Awards (BLAJA) held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel and Casino Manila last Tuesday. Molina, The STAR’s Ilocus Sur correspondent bagged the Tobacco Story of the Year Awards for his article, “Is the tobacco industry headed for collapse?” Visperas, a reporter based in Pangasinan, won the Best Agricultural News Story (national) award for her article “BFAR promotes use of aerators to increase shrimp production.”
The annual BLAJA, sponsored by Philip Morris Fortune Tobacco (PMFTC), recognizes journalists whose stories on agriculture had been published, shown on television or aired on radio.
Bayan Elero, PMFTC director for corporate affairs, said Bright Leaf was organized in 2007 to promote public awareness of the current agricultural issues and the best farming practices, including environmental care, safety and crop sustainability.
“We hope to contribute to the development of the agriculture sector,’ Elero said. She said Bright Leaf received this year a total of 1,407 entries from all over the country.
The Oriental Leaf Award went to Inez Magbual who has received numerous Bright Leaf awards over the years.
Other winners are: Agriculture Story of the Year, “What’s behind the fuss over CP foods?” by Fermin Diaz of Lamb Magazine; Agriculture Photo of the Year, “Planting Time” by David Leprozo Jr. of Manila Standard Today; Tobacco Photo of the Year, “The Sun life far” by Mauricio Victa of Business Mirror; Best Agriculture News Story (regional) “Farmers in Region 12 urged to plant organic rice for foreign markets” written by Romer Sarmiento for MindaNews; Best Agriculture Feature Story (national), “Highland ‘yuyu’ in Cordillera nearing extinction” by Marilou Guieb of Business Mirror; Best Agriculture Feature Story (regional), “Urban Village takes initiative on adaptive climate change farming” by Ian Ocampo Flora of SunStar Pampanga; Best Agriculture Radio Program, “The importance of tobacco in the culture of planting tobacco” by Rose Malekchan of dzWT Radyo Totoo; Best Agriculture TV Program, “Kakao Eskuwela; Cacao check 5&6” by Kenneth Bajo of SkyCable/DE Channel 32.