Panaderia Pantoja was started by the couple of Aurelio and Celinda Pantoja back in 1950. They inherited a house in Tanauan Batangas and found a worn-out “pugon” brick oven in the backyard. The old oven inspired Aurelio to start right then and there a bakery business, which they appropriatetly called Panaderia Pantoja.
With very little capital, Aurelio rehabilitated the oven, hired a few bakers from neighboring Batangas towns, and kept the business going. Back then, there were no mechanical equipment such as mixers, dividers, dough rollers and rounders. All bread products were hand-made.
Since slicers were not yet available, bakers would have to use knives to slice loaves of bread. Aside from owning the business himself, Aurelio performed multiple jobs of delivery man, purchaser and production manager of the bakery while Celinda handled the day-to-day operations of the bakery.
The Pantoja couple virtually relied on “word of mouth” to market their products in town such as pandesal, tasty bread, and paborita and jacobina biscuits. These limitations, however, did not hinder the Pantojas from fulfilling their dream.