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Involve more Singaporeans in national effort to ramp up homegrown produce

After Malaysia announced a nationwide lockdown recently to curb the spread of Covid-19, some Singaporeans rushed to buy food and other necessities.

The writer urges the Government to involve more Singaporeans in the country’s effort to produce more food locally.

The writer urges the Government to involve more Singaporeans in the country’s effort to produce more food locally.

June Teng Poh Hoon

After Malaysia announced a nationwide lockdown recently to curb the spread of Covid-19, some Singaporeans rushed to buy food and other necessities.

Their fear was probably driven by the fact that Singapore imports more than 90 per cent of its food supply.

Covid-19 is a crisis unlike any that Singaporeans have experienced.

Even as we keep calm and carry on, we should take this opportunity to examine and change the way we live.

Food waste in Singapore has increased by about 30 per cent in the last decade or so, reaching 763,100 tonnes in 2018. 

I hope we are now more aware of the importance of eliminating food waste because we may not always have an abundant food supply.

The Government’s goal to produce 30 per cent of Singapore’s nutritional needs locally by 2030 is timely.

In addition to using the latest research and technology, and working with the industry, I hope the authorities would also mobilise more Singaporeans in this national effort.

This can be done by unlocking more spaces where citizens can grow edible crops and practise food composting, such as community gardens in Housing and Development Board estates.

Educational institutions, government agencies and large organisations should also consider housing such gardens if their facilities allow.

When urbanised Singaporeans are encouraged to reconnect with nature by growing and caring for their own crops, they will appreciate how precious food and other natural resources are and why we must make sustainability a priority.

Have views on this issue or a news topic you care about? Send your letter to voices [at] mediacorp.com.sg with your full name, address and phone number. 

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food food security Malaysia lockdown panic buying Covid-19 coronavirus

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