The Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA) announced on May 11, 2017, that it will be tendering out about 60 hectares of new agricultural land in Lim Chu Kang and Sungei Tengah for food farming.
The land is divided into 36 plots and will be put up for tender in tranches from August this year. These plots will be tendered on 20-year leases instead of the previous 10-year blocks. This is to provide "more certainty" to farms and encourage them to invest in technologies.
Emphasis will be placed on the quality of proposals. Farmers will compete based on the best concepts proposed, with a focus on productivity gains rather than on land price alone. The first tranche up for tender this August covers 12 plots of land which are meant for leafy vegetable farming, said AVA, while another three plots of land for fish farming will be slated for tender in October.
The criteria used to assess the tender proposals will involve:
- Production capability; ability to achieve high production levels
- Production track record; ability to achieve projected production levels based on past performance
- Relevant experience and qualification; ability to deliver results
- Innovation and sustainability; ability to use innovation to improve and sustain production, and maintain business viability
This means that farmers with good production records and ideas that can optimise production and manpower will stand a good chance of winning the new plots.
“Those planning to participate in the upcoming tenders must seize the opportunity to adopt innovative agri-technologies to maximise land and labour productivity,” said AVA CEO Tan Poh Hong.
“We strongly encourage our farmers to work with AVA, to embrace technology to boost Singapore’s food security. I am glad that many farmers recognise that technology is critical to the future of farming," said Tan Poh Hong, Chief Executive Officer, AVA. "To help farmers be familiar with putting up tender proposals based on concepts, AVA would conduct advisory sessions on the drafting these proposals before the launch of every tender."