ALBERT MG GARCIA, 66, has always led an active lifestyle. He has been into sports since he was in grade school. As a college student at the De La Salle University (DLSU) in the late 1960s, he excelled in sports, running track and playing varsity football. At one time, he represented the country as a member of the Philippine football team.
He was inducted into the DLSU Sports Hall of Fame in 1997. He plays golf these days.
He was also at the forefront of student activism in the Philippines at the height of unrest among the world’s youth in the 1960s and the 1970s.
When the writ of habeas corpus was indefinitely suspended by Ferdinand Marcos on September 29, 1971, Garcia’s family feared for his safety. He unwillingly left for Australia, where an older brother and an older sister already lived. He was in that country for the next 25 years.
Garcia brought his enterprising nature and love for sports to his adopted country. He applied his Bachelor of Science in Marketing when he set up a food-importation business featuring Asian products.
“I was basically a one-man show, doing everything from paperwork to loading my truck,” he said. He was among the pioneers introducing packaged and manufactured Asian food Down Under, and was instrumental in expanding Australian cuisine.
While his business flourished, Garcia began formulating his own line of products for health-conscious people like him. He began with a product he called C-lium, featuring psyllium fiber.
He returned to the Philippines in 1995 with his product line sold through Whealth Inc. He expanded his line to include Goutritis, a natural product for sufferers of gout and arthritis; Brainmaster to enhance the memory function of those who feel their memory is beginning to slip; and CranUTI with its basic ingredient of cranberry powder helping clear the urinary tract of infection.
Garcia has partnered with Pascual Laboratories to produce his products.
His line of wellness goods is well received in Singapore and Malaysia. To facilitate their marketing, he does his research and development in India.
Mercury Drug sells his wellness products over the counter as they are nonprescriptive.
He said “retirement is not part of his plan” and that older people still can make huge contributions to society with “their wealth of experience and wisdom.” He firmly believes that young people stand to benefit from a mentor relationship with their elders.
Garcia is a prime example of an older person continuing to contribute to society.
He is actively involved in the Philippine Australian Business Council and was its chairman from 2002 to 2008. He worked closely with the Export Management Bureau of the Department of Trade and Industry in developing the country’s free-trade agreement with Australia and New Zealand, opening up trade opportunities for local manufacturers and traders with the two countries.
He is an active member of the Rotary Club of Forbes Park, which has partnered with the Philippine National Police to provide extra eyes and ears to keep the communities where they live and do business safe and secure.
He is also the chairman of the Philippine Chamber of Herbal Industries that works with different sectors not only to advance the industry but to safekeep the country’s natural resources.