Interested in farm-fresh produce?
These organic farms in Singapore play host to volunteering and internship opportunities, delicious produce and a variety of fun and educational activities.
Fire Flies sells organic produce and compost, conducts eco-tours, and runs a service that designs and sets up mini organic gardens in homes and offices. The Lim Chu Kang farm is open to public drop-ins from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily — except during Chinese New Year. You can also book a slot beforehand to ensure you get an in-depth overview of what goes on at the farm. Visitors can also look forward to bringing home plenty of farm-fresh and selectively imported produce; Fire Flies has tie-ups with other organic outfits overseas to bring in stock (mainly fruits) that don’t grow readily here, and also as a mutually supportive network.
Convinced that conventionally farmed food causes more harm than good, the founders of FOLO (Feed Our Loved Ones) started their first farm in Malaysia to feed their own families — the visible, quantitative benefits of eating the work of their hands has since brought many more people on board. FOLO has now grown into a multi-site affair complete with a composting centre, where about three tonnes of food waste collected from the neighbourhood is processed daily. Its Community Supported Agriculture model currently feeds 80 families.
FOLO has only one site open to the public at the moment, but there’s plenty to see, experience and learn there. It’s open to the public on Saturdays, from 11am – 3pm, though tours have to be pre-booked via their website; these are at noon and 2 p.m. and accommodate a maximum of 20 people each, so make a booking to avoid disappointment. You can also arrange private tours or visits or other days or at other times via e-mail or Whatsapp — don’t call, as the core team does not work at the farm full time and will respond only when they can. Volunteers who want to learn or help out are welcome, as are interns.
Zenxin Agri-Organic Food in Kluang, Johor sells its vegetables in supermarkets in both Malaysia and Singapore. But if you’re keen to go for a farm tour, they’ve developed Zenxin Organic Park especially for visitors. The Park, which is open from 8.30am –6.30pm daily, has tours specifically catered for kindergartens, students, family and corporate members.
It is a sprawling affair complete with a real in-use farming facility, a farm mart and flower nursery, a conference hall and meeting rooms (available for hire), a steamboat restaurant, and fun recreational amenities like a “fishing drain” for kids, a mini “petting zoo”, barbecue pits, cycling tracks, and even an archery range. The different tours, ranging from 2 hours to the whole day, covers a diverse amount of activities that are informative yet fun. Certain tours have to be booked in advance, so check the website for more details.
By Annabelle Bok; This story first appeared on The Peak, March 2017.
More on The Finder: