July 1, 2020
Singapore announces US$39 million grant for domestic agriculture and aquaculture companies
Enterprise Singapore (ESG) has set aside SGD 55 million (~US$39.4 million; SGD 1 = US$0.72) to assist the growth of domestic agriculture and aquaculture companies grow, the Straits Times Singapore reported.
The grant will be channelled towards growing the companies' innovation capabilities as they develop more resource friendly, high yield farm solutions.
Dr Koh Poh Koon, Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry said the grant is part of the country's 30 by 30 goal, to cover 30% of Singapore's nutritional needs through domestic production.
He said the grant will help hasten the goal and provide food security amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dr Koh said he sees the possibility of expanding the local agri-food industry and providing more jobs to Singaporeans.
Agri-food tech start-ups have received almost SGD 40 million (~US$28.7 million) from public and private sources.
Local company Singrow has been working with ESG to expand, having developed new cultivation methods for high value crops such as strawberries. The company's indoor farm is a repurposed 500 sq m sports hall with a 6.5 m tall ceiling.
The indoor farm has a controlled environment to reduce the time needed to grow crops, along with the use of artificial intelligence for pollinating and harvesting.
Singrow plans to build a larger facility by 2022 and expand to China, Indonesia, Vietnam and Malaysia. It will also license its technology, which can be used to grow leafy vegetables.
- The Straits Times Singapore