Turning culinary dreams into business success

Villa Socorro Farm is a social enterprise that produces the popular banana chips that are loved all over the world. Even with its success, it is not afraid to innovate with flavors. Through the years, its banana chips were introduced mixed with garlic, barbecue and even Chocnut as flavor. 

According to Raymund Aaron, also known as “The Banana Chief” of Villa Socorro Farm, it is important to stay ahead and harness the latest culinary trends and technologies.

”If you’re now catering to Gen Z consumers, many are looking for new and exciting flavors. So, we must innovate and bring in some global flavors but still maintain the ‘Filipino heart’ of our products,” said Aaron. His approach to product development demonstrates a deep respect for traditional farming and food production while embracing modern techniques and ideas. 

It is, for this reason, that he realized the need to equip himself with the right tools. Aaron then enrolled at the country’s top culinary school, the Center for Culinary Arts, Manila (CCA Manila) and took up the Professional Chef Program. 

AARON with his banana chips products.

Journey and Jumpstart

The Professional Chef Program at CCA Manila, in partnership with Rouxbe Online Culinary School, equipped Aaron with the tools to explore his culinary interests deeply and apply his newfound skills to his family’s business. 

“Knowing the basics changed my whole perspective regarding how to cook. It’s a journey, and I’m really glad CCA gave me the jumpstart,” Aaron shared.

His dedication to continuous learning and adaptation serves as an inspiration to aspiring chefs and entrepreneurs alike.

“At first, I enrolled at CCA Manila because of my desire to deepen my culinary knowledge and skills, but I learned more than just that — I learned how to infuse innovation into the traditional family business of banana chip production. This is very vital since we want to elevate the business and make it future resilient.”  

His story is not just about personal achievement but also about redefining a family legacy. With a foundation built on CCA Manila’s comprehensive curriculum, he could experiment and elevate traditional Filipino snacks into something unique and exciting.

I was able to get into a farming industry which I wasn’t passionate about at first. But the beauty was it allowed me to find things I was passionate about and bring it into the business,” he said.

To learn more about CCA Manila and the Professional Chef Program, visit https://cca-manila.edu.ph or contact us at @ccamanila on Facebook and Instagram or email [email protected].