There is a quote that goes “Choose a job that you love and you don’t need to work for the rest of your life.”
Generally, people who follow this advice are those who are either fulfilled in their jobs or successful in their careers, as in the case of Kapuso star Bettina Carlos.
Bettina is not only an actress, she is also a successful baker.
Since she sold her first box of pastries in 2011, Bettina’s home-based bakery business has grown and is now a profitable source of income.
HOW IT STARTED. In 2008, her now ex-boyfriend gave her a baking book as a Christmas/birthday present.
“I grew up with this love for freshly baked pandesal,” she recounted at the pocket press conference for her pastry business last September 18, Thursday, at GMA.
“Sabi ko, one day, I’ll make pandesal from scratch, not thinking na magagawa ko.”
She saw the book as a sign to start baking, which eventually became a hobby.
She remembers the first-ever pastry she baked from scratch—whole wheat bread honey walnut loaf.
In 2011, she sold her first box of cookies. Thus, the birth of her pastry business, Baked Bites by ABC.
ABC stands for her initials—Anna Bettina Carlos.
This gave Bettina a sense of accomplishment because her mother and grandmother were good cooks.
The pastries that Bettina's Baked Bites offer. (Photo by GMA Corp Comm)
INDEPENDENT. Bettina told PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) and other members of the press that she is hands-on when it comes to her business and does almost everything herself, with a little help from mom and lola.
She pays attention to the smallest detail. "When it comes to work or business [I’m very hands-on] kasi madetalye ako,” she said.
Does she have plans of hiring people?
“That’s what my dad told me, ‘You know, anak, if you really want it to become big, you have to start hiring people. At least, taga-scoop mo, taga-gawa mo ng kahon, ganyan.’”
The actress confessed that it is hard to find the right people.
“Number one, it’s home-based. It’s in our house in Novaliches. If I hire someone, he/she has to work in our home.
“Kung kukuha ako ng tao, kailangan andun rin ako. Magbabayad pa ako, kaya ko naman,” she justified.
“For the time being, I’m grateful that it’s growing, slow-paced, pero it’s manageable pa naman.”
She said that when God wills it, He will give her the right people to help her in the business.
Apart from her mom and grandma, her only staff is her driver, who delivers the pastries to her clients.
“This year, I was blessed with a driver who is also my [delivery] rider. Inuutusan ko rin siyang mag-purchase [ng ingredients].
"But before, when I started, I did the purchasing, measuring, baking, washing, sweeping, mopping, delivery—lahat ako.”
When she didn’t have a driver yet, Bettina would personally deliver the orders to her clients.
“Me and my mom, kami ang relyebo sa driving. Meron akong trust issues kasi,” she confessed.
“It’s hard for me to ask for help kasi I was raised to be independent. Secondly, may trust issues ako—hirap ako mag-delegate [ng work].
"Ang hirap maghanap ng someone to train that you can trust, who has the same passion for what you do.”
HAPPY ACCIDENT. Currently, Bettina offers five pastries: Nutella Rocks, Oreo Cheesecakes, cookies, brownies, and Dulce de Leche.
She takes pride in her best-seller, the Nutella Rocks, which she describes as her “happy accident.”
She recounted: “Christmas 2011. I wanted to bake a cookie that’s like a Ferrero [chocolate] but with the chewiness of Mrs. Fields [cookies], kasi yun ang favorite ko nung bata ako.
“Gawa ako ng cookies... nung third [attempt], iniiyakan ko na. Di ko talaga siya makuha. Pinahiran ko ng Nutella. Sarap! This is it!
“So yun ang happy accident ko. I always say that. This is a mistake that brought about my biggest blessing.”
NO FORMAL TRAINING. The pastries Bettina sells are the result of trial and error. She has no formal training in baking. Indeed, experience is her best teacher.
But she is not resting on her laurels. She is taking up a baking class at Chef Boy Logro’s culinary school in Cavite.
“His school offers... formal baking education talaga,” explained Bettina.
“Pero dahil erratic ang schedule, hindi rin ako nakakapasok [regularly]. But Chef Boy is very lenient naman na anytime [I’m] free lang, I just go and he offers make-up classes.
“Sobrang encouraging siya sa akin. Lahat ng tinututuro niya ina-absorb ko talaga.”
DOING GOOD. Asked how her business is doing, Bettina answered, “Ang kita ko sa isang taping, katumbas ng benta ko sa isang linggo."
“So maaasahan mong makakabuhay ng isang pamilya.
“It picked up already. Meron na talaga siyang following.”
For now, she advertises on social media.
“Word of mouth, social media presence, online presence, Instagram," she said.
“Testimonies of people on TV, thanks to GMA; then there's print, thanks to [GMA] Corporate Communication; thanks to people from work also," she added.
Will she open a store for her products?
“My ultimate goal talaga is to put up a café, a small dessert place, pero hindi pa ako ready and 'di ko pa siya navi-visualize at this point.
"Kasi everything is digital, e. Even the buying behavior of people now. If they wanna buy something, they google it first and if they can buy it online, di na [sila] pupunta ng mall.
“So para magtayo pa ako ng place na ime-maintain ko pa, iko-construct ko pa, hindi pa siguro ngayon.”
She also sells her pastries in provincial areas.
“Sabi ko, ‘Lord, give me a way to expand this.’ Ang ibinigay sa akin provincial resellers."
Her resellers come from Ilocos, Bicol, Cebu, and Iloilo. “Kalat sa Pilipinas, so I ship the Nutella Rocks to them,” said Bettina.
She has also figured out a system so that provincial clients get their orders in less than 24 hours.
“So I bake in the morning, the LBC dispatcher picks it up at night, tapos last flight out ng gabi, first flight in the next day. So less than 24 hours it’s there na. So what my resellers do, they take pre-orders, para pag bagsak, labas [sa mga clients].
“Cookies naman generally mahaba ang buhay. Pero, may I say, three to four days lang ‘yan, to be safe, because I want them fresh when they're eaten.”