Celebrating the 2020: Singapore Food Story Campaign and Launch of the First Grant Call for SG Eco Fund
25 November 2020 – The Ministry of Sustainability and the Environment (MSE) celebrated the eventful year-long 2020: Singapore Food Story campaign at its year-end appreciation event held today.
2020: Singapore Food Story
2 In February, MSE launched the 2020: Singapore Food Story campaign amidst concerns about global supply chain disruptions stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, and the longer-term effects of climate change on the resilience of our food supply. To ensure a safe, diversified and secure food supply for Singapore, several initiatives were introduced this year to increase our local food production.
3 In April, the Singapore Food Agency (SFA) launched the “30x30 Express” grant call to support the growth of local agri-food enterprises and accelerate the ramp up in local food production over a period of six to 24 months. Close to $40 million of funding was awarded to nine companies, which had proposals that incorporated highly productive farming systems that can be constructed and implemented quickly to achieve high production levels.
4 In May, SFA launched the tender for the rental of nine Housing & Development Board (HDB) multi-storey car park (MSCP) rooftop sites for urban farming. The sites were subsequently awarded to six tenderers in September, for a term of up to three years. The sites have the potential to collectively produce around 1,600 tonnes of vegetables annually. More MSCP rooftop sites will be made available later.
5 In October, SFA announced plans to embark on an exercise to master plan the Lim Chu Kang (LCK) area to create a high-tech, highly productive and resource-efficient agri-food cluster, and generate new job opportunities in the sector. It is anticipated that the area will produce more than three times its current food production when the LCK agri-food cluster is completed. Two tenders will be launched in the coming weeks as part of the masterplanning process – a topographical study and an environmental study to better understand the ecosystems in that area. The findings from both studies, as well as consultations with the industry and relevant stakeholders, will help to refine the LCK masterplan.
6 Other than developing spaces for farming, SFA has worked on leveraging research and development (R&D) for our “30 by 30” goal. To catalyse research on fish nutrition and feed development, SFA recently established a new aquaculture nutrition facility at our Marine Aquaculture Centre. The new facility consists of a pilot-scale aquaculture feed mill and experimental tank systems that researchers, Institutes of Higher Learning and the industry can tap on for R&D.
Working with Partners to Enhance our Food Security
7 The increase in local food production capacity and the transformation of our agri-food sector needs to be underpinned by strong demand for local produce, in order to create a commercially-sustainable and vibrant agri-food ecosystem. To support efforts on this front, MSE and SFA convened a Citizens’ Workgroup in July to co-create and co-deliver solutions to increase demand for local produce. The Workgroup presented their recommendations last month and MSE and SFA will carefully study all the proposals and identify pilot projects that can be co-delivered with participants.
8 To enable consumers to easily identify local produce, SFA has launched a new SG Fresh Produce logo, which was designed in consultation with industry partners and the public. The logo was rolled out in August and over 30 local producers, retailers and distributors have incorporated the use of the logo into the packaging or marketing collaterals for their local produce. SFA also launched the #FromSGtoSG campaign in August to highlight the freshness of local produce with a shorter delivery time from local farms to retail outlets or dining table, and the lower carbon footprint.
9 MSE has been working with our People, Private, and Public (3P) partners to raise awareness of the importance of having a resilient supply of food. For example, the Youth Track at the Global Compact Network Singapore (GCNS) Virtual Summit explored the topic of food security, and The Maju Collective organised a hackathon on food supply resilience. Ricoh Asia Pacific partnered with the community and schools to distribute gardening seeds and encouraged the public to harvest and plant their own vegetables. Free seed packs, funded by DBS and the Tote Board through the Garden City Fund, were also distributed to the public under NParks’ “Gardening with Edibles” initiative.
First Grant Call for $50 million SG Eco Fund
10 In March, MSE announced that a $50 million SG Eco Fund would be set up to foster greater community and individual ownership of and action on environmental sustainability in Singapore. The Fund is open to the 3P sectors and aims to support ground-up projects that involve the community and advance environmental sustainability in Singapore. The fund will cover projects across a broad range of areas related to sustainability, including climate change mitigation, waste reduction, as well as the conservation of nature and biodiversity.
11 MSE has launched the first grant call for the SG Eco Fund today. The grant call will close on 31 January 2021. Individuals, non-governmental organisations and businesses with ideas on sustainability are encouraged to apply for the Fund. More details of the SG Eco Fund can be found in Annex A.
Emerging Stronger from COVID-19
12 At the event held today, Ms Grace Fu, Minister for Sustainability and the Environment, expressed her appreciation for the support of partners and stakeholders. She said: “The 2020: SG Food Story campaign has successfully galvanised the People, Public and Private sectors to address the fundamental and existential issue of ensuring a safe and secure supply of food for Singapore. As we work on emerging stronger from the COVID-19 crisis, we will continue to develop the agri-food sector in a sustainable manner, and generate business and job opportunities in the industry for our people. To further our nation’s sustainability agenda, I strongly encourage the industries and our community to tap into the SG Eco Fund, and spearhead ground-up initiatives for a greener Singapore.”
Annex A: Factsheet on SG Eco Fund
1 About the Fund
The $50 million SG Eco Fund was announced by the Ministry of Sustainability and the Environment (MSE) during the Committee of Supply Debate in March 2020. The Fund will support projects that advance environmental sustainability, and that involve the community. By supporting these projects, MSE hopes to motivate and enable individuals, groups and companies to take collective action to build a more sustainable future.
2 Eligibility Criteria
The SG Eco Fund is open to the following applicants:
Individuals: Must be a Singapore Citizen or Permanent Resident, above 18 years old, and residing in Singapore;
Groups of Individuals: All individuals must be above 18 years old and residing in Singapore, and the group must have at least one Singapore Citizen or Permanent Resident;
Organisations: Singapore-registered organisations, including companies, charities, government and non-government organisations.
Improve the environment or advance environmental sustainability in Singapore;
Engage and/or involve the community;
Not have commenced;
Not have obtained funding from other government sources.
Projects should address at least one area of environmental sustainability, including but not limited to the following: climate change; energy; waste; water; food; nature and biodiversity; environmental pollution; or environmental public health.
3 Supportable Projects
Supportable projects include, but are not limited to:
Those jointly initiated by the community and businesses to advance environmental sustainability;
Those educating the community and promoting awareness on environmental sustainability practices;
Those implementing innovative technologies to help the community reduce usage of resources;
Those developing behavioural nudges and interventions to encourage environmentally-friendly habits.
4 Funding Support
The SG Eco Fund works on a co-funding basis. If the application is approved, the applicant may receive funding of up to 80% of the supportable cost items, subject to a maximum of S$1 million. Funding will be provided for no more than three years from the date of the Letter of Award.
5 Fund Application
The SG Eco Fund opens for application on 25 November 2020 and will close on 31 January 2021. The applications will be evaluated in two batches. Applications received by 31 December 2020 will be processed earlier, while applications received after 31 December 2020 will be processed later. Applicants can visit http://www.sgeco.gov.sg to find out more about the application process.
Applicants may submit more than one project application, but will have to show that they have enough manpower and resources to manage multiple projects.
For further queries, applicants may contact the SG Eco Office at firstname.lastname@example.org.