Connect with us

LifeStyle

He runs a farm with rooftop parking in S’pore, sells 16,000 packets of vegetables per month

Published

on

He runs a farm with rooftop parking in S’pore, sells 16,000 packets of vegetables per month

Look far into the distance when in Tampines and you may see a strange patch of green on top of a multi-story parking lot.

Those vegetables that you consume on a daily basis (xiao bai cai, kailan, bayam) could also be grown in that parking lot.

Approximately four tons or 4,000 kg of vegetables, which is equivalent to almost 16,000 packages of vegetables, are harvested on this “makeshift” farm each month.

It is cultivated and managed by 35-year-old businessman Nicholas Goh and his team at Nature’s International Commodity (NIC).

The farm is surrounded by HDB buildings in Tampines / Image Credit: Nicholas Goh

Nicholas supplies his vegetables to local distributors in Singapore. They are sold a little cheaper than the market price and NTUC FairPrice, he claims.

Since the farm started eight months ago, the business has been good, having sold most of the vegetables they harvest.

Nicholas was one of the few who won the tender in May 2020 to create rooftop farms in public housing parking lots. The movement to find alternative agricultural spaces in land-constrained Singapore is part of the country’s strategy to meet its 30 by 30 target, which is to produce 30% of its nutritional needs locally by 2030.

parking on the roof of the tampines farm
Nicholas Nature’s International Commodity’s Lush Urban Farm Vegetables / Image Credit: Nicholas Goh

He was a mango farmer in Cambodia.

Unknown to many, Nicholas is actually an accomplished Cambodian businessman. He runs a 72-hectare agricultural land in Cambodia, which is almost the size of 140 football fields, selling mainly mangoes.

“I also have a waste management factory that converts food waste into organic fertilizer. Covid-19 has affected almost every business sector in the world. Although we are an essential service, we still face problems such as logistics, border closures and shortages of raw material supplies due to blocked distribution channels, ”said Nicholas, explaining why he is currently based in Singapore.

mango farm cambodia
Nicholas’ farm in Cambodia is about the size of 140 football fields / Image Credit: Nicholas Goh

Border controls prevented Nicholas from running his Cambodia business last year, prompting him to start the NIC urban agriculture business and turn to serve local customers.

“We grow these vegetables due to local consumption habits and the requirements that the Singapore Food Agency (SFA) set for all food producing farms. We harvest our vegetables weekly, ”he said.

School dropout turned entrepreneur

Nicholas was a student of the Express stream, but dropped out at age 16.

He reasoned that he had a strong desire to help the underprivileged and criminals, while serving in the youth ministry in the church during mission trips to Cambodia.

“Even at that age, I had an innate passion for the underprivileged and the entrepreneurial spirit kept stirring in my heart with the desire to seek solutions to make this world a better place through business.”

“But I soon realized that I had to go back to school to finish my education if I wanted to have a better understanding of the business world.”

nicholas goh rooftop farm tampines parking
Nicholas dropped out of school before returning after a path of self-discovery / Image Credit: Nicholas Goh

At the age of 18, Nicholas returned to Singapore to serve in the National Service and subsequently decided to continue his studies. He graduated with a Diploma in Electrical Engineering from Nanyang Polytechnic and plunged back into his life’s mission shortly after.

“Through the many school trips to Cambodia as a volunteer, my compassion for this land and poor farmers grew. Finally, I moved to the country as a humble farmer at the age of 26. I lived and worked as a Khmer farmer, like everyone else there. “

parking on the roof of the tampines farm
The parking lot farm produces four tons of vegetables a month, or 16,000 packages of vegetables / Image credit: Nicholas Goh

It was through long hours of tilling soil and debris with his hands that Nicholas discovered a successful formula for creating eco-friendly organic fertilizers, a key ingredient that gave him the impetus to develop his TWIN Agritech business in Cambodia.

TWIN Agri is the largest supplier of organic fertilizers in Cambodia, offering 800-900 tons of fertilizers per month. It posted a 10-fold growth in the last four years.

He also claimed that this fertilizer acted as a “magic formula” to grow his crops in Tampines.

Agriculture in Singapore

The Tampines parking lot farm grows vegetables such as xiao bai cai, kailan and bayam to satisfy the consumption habits of the locals.

It also follows the requirements set by the SFA for all food producing farms, such as keeping the farm in a clean and sanitary condition at all times.

parking on the roof of the tampines farm
Urban agriculture uses soil technology and relies on sensors to identify problems / Image Credit: Nicholas Goh

According to Nicholas, urban farming methods differ from traditional farming. His business uses its soil technology, eco-friendly organic fertilizers, to grow vegetables.

Nicholas also uses sensors to help identify potential problems in crops, which he says helps him save time and money.

“I believe in a strategic agricultural solution, which is to do small things, manage well and be strategically located. Urban agriculture defines it as a farm, since it supplies and complements the residents’ needs, ”he said.

When asked how he deals with unexpected rains or flash floods in Singapore, Nicholas said that rainfall in the country is relatively constant.

“Rain and sun are part of the growing process. We grow creepers and vines to block out the sun and rain.”

Local expansion plans

Nicholas has plans to work on his Singapore and Cambodia businesses once the borders are reopened, although this is unlikely to happen anytime soon, given the resurgence of Covid-19 cases around the world.

The farmer said that local vegetable sales in Singapore have been good and almost all of them are sold every month.

Spurred by strong sales, it plans to gradually expand within the country, as vegetables are competitively priced for the local produce market.

“We plan to expand, but there are limitations, mainly (to find) people who are willing to succeed in the sun. We will expand soon once we have strengthened our business model and strategy. “

parking on the roof of the tampines farm
It’s hard to find workers in Singapore who want to work on a farm / Image Credit: Nicholas Goh

In fact, being an urban farmer in Singapore has not been an easy ride, as rooftop farming is a new concept.

“The issues are always about complaints that lead to actions by various government agencies. It’s hard to have the best of both worlds where, on the one hand, you have food security and food supply, but on the other hand, you are afraid of insects, smell and dirt, ”said Nicholas.

“Agriculture is not a clean business and it is not for the elderly because it is very strict.”

When asked if he would be interested in opening the farm to the public for viewing and as a public attraction, the proud farmer shakes his head as he protects his crops and also strictly follows SFA guidelines.

“We generally control public visits for a few reasons: for biosecurity reasons, where we don’t want the public to carry viruses that can cause problems in our plants, and also due to recent Covid-19 restrictions. “


Startup Feature Stories is a key content pillar for Vulcan Post. You can follow our coverage on startups here.


Starting July 1, 2021, Vulcan Post premium items will be hidden behind a paywall. Subscribers will be able to enjoy exclusive articles with a deeper level of coverage and knowledge on verticals including government technology, electric vehicles, cryptocurrencies and e-commerce. You can check our premium articles here and subscribe to us here.


Featured Image Credit: Nicholas Goh

Advertisement
Advertisement

Lifestyle

LifeStyle4 days ago

How to Prioritize Self Care as a New Parent

A bundle of joy has joined you in your life and you couldn’t be happier. But, at the same time,...

LifeStyle4 days ago

5 Reasons Why You Can’t Stay Asleep

You have likely heard it most of your life: getting a good night’s sleep is important for your overall health....

LifeStyle7 days ago

4 Ways to Spread Joy This Fall

Traditionally, many people strive to spread as much joy as they can in the weeks leading up to Christmas. But...

LifeStyle4 weeks ago

Tips to Boost Your Energy and Ensure Life Longevity with NMN Supplements

Australia’s median age limit increased by two years recently. Higher NAD+ can improve your metabolism rates and prolong natural aging....

LifeStyle2 months ago

5 Tips on Writing APA Research Paper

When students reach college education, they understand that it won’t all be flowers and sunshine. There are different courses with...

Support group for businesses to overcome challenges Support group for businesses to overcome challenges
LifeStyle2 months ago

Support group for businesses to overcome challenges

All-day brunch and soup kitchen Cafe Coco suffered as walk-ins dwindled significantly. It’s a tourist-dependent cafe that’s nestled in the...

S’pore startup Shiok Meats acquires clean red meat company Gaia Foods S’pore startup Shiok Meats acquires clean red meat company Gaia Foods
LifeStyle2 months ago

S’pore startup Shiok Meats acquires clean red meat company Gaia Foods

According to Technology in Asia, Shiok Meats has acquired a stake of more than 90% in Gaia Foods for an...

Marianna Hewitt’s home proves that neutral decor can be full of personality Marianna Hewitt’s home proves that neutral decor can be full of personality
LifeStyle2 months ago

Marianna Hewitt’s home proves that neutral decor can be full of personality

If anyone understands the importance of maintaining your brand, it is Marianna Hewitt. The trusted influencer and founder of the...

The 16 best stuffed pepper recipes for every occasion The 16 best stuffed pepper recipes for every occasion
LifeStyle2 months ago

The 16 best stuffed pepper recipes for every occasion

Something you may not know about me is that I absolutely adore a pepper. Raw, cooked, marinated, bathed: each and...

Top 10 Bedroom Plants That Work As Air Purifying Plants Top 10 Bedroom Plants That Work As Air Purifying Plants
LifeStyle2 months ago

Top 10 Bedroom Plants That Work As Air Purifying Plants

Setting a specific tone in a bedroom can happen in many ways. A beautiful candle, plush rugs, soft bedding, soothing...

Advertisement

Sport

Sports2 months ago

5 Tips for Setting Up Your PC for Online Gaming

Due to advances in technology, online gamers can enjoy a gaming experience that was unthinkable even a decade ago. High-resolution...

Sports2 months ago

How to Succeed in Poker Tournaments

Perhaps your first big poker tournament is coming up, or you’ve been gathering skills ready to enter – no matter...

Sports2 months ago

Is The Olympics Still Relevant?

As the Tokyo Olympics has come to a close, competitors must move on from the excitement of experiencing an Olympic...

Fernández reflects on the game against Dart: ‘Honestly, I can’t think of anything positive’ Fernández reflects on the game against Dart: ‘Honestly, I can’t think of anything positive’
Sports2 months ago

Fernández reflects on the game against Dart: ‘Honestly, I can’t think of anything positive’

var adServerUrl = “”; var $ el = $ (“# video_container-985707”); var permalink = $ el.closest (‘. snet-single-article’). data (‘permalink’);...

Tammy Abraham to Roma – Mourinho is the perfect coach for the striker Tammy Abraham to Roma – Mourinho is the perfect coach for the striker
Sports2 months ago

Tammy Abraham to Roma – Mourinho is the perfect coach for the striker

It seems that not too long ago, a young English Target Man was a troubling prospect for most Premier League...

Explanation: Why Barcelona had to let Messi go Explanation: Why Barcelona had to let Messi go
Sports2 months ago

Explanation: Why Barcelona had to let Messi go

Barcelona’s Argentine forward Lionel Messi cries during a press conference at Barcelona’s Camp Nou stadium on August 8, 2021. –...

Are Arsenal and Spurs left out of the top 6 in dispute as the 2021/22 season approaches? Are Arsenal and Spurs left out of the top 6 in dispute as the 2021/22 season approaches?
Sports2 months ago

Are Arsenal and Spurs left out of the top 6 in dispute as the 2021/22 season approaches?

Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea, Spurs and Arsenal are the teams that are widely regarded as the top 6...

What should team Canada’s men’s hockey roster look like? What should team Canada’s men’s hockey roster look like?
Sports2 months ago

What should team Canada’s men’s hockey roster look like?

We have sent an email with instructions to create a new password. Your current password has not been changed. We...

Haaland, but staying in Dotmund, can BVB get the title on 21/22? Haaland, but staying in Dotmund, can BVB get the title on 21/22?
Sports2 months ago

Haaland, but staying in Dotmund, can BVB get the title on 21/22?

There are almost twenty days left in the transfer window. The window is in full swing as deals that would...

Knicks agree to deal with Dwayne Bacon: reports Knicks agree to deal with Dwayne Bacon: reports
Sports2 months ago

Knicks agree to deal with Dwayne Bacon: reports

Dwayne Bacon # 8 of the Orlando Magic shoots as John Collins # 20 of the Atlanta Hawks defends during...

Advertisement

Entertainment

Venice adds Doc ‘Ennio’;  Netflix Confirms Sanjay Leela Bhansali Series – News Block Venice adds Doc ‘Ennio’;  Netflix Confirms Sanjay Leela Bhansali Series – News Block
Entertainment2 months ago

Venice adds Doc ‘Ennio’; Netflix Confirms Sanjay Leela Bhansali Series – News Block

Venice adds Giuseppe Tornatore’s Ennio Morricone film The Venice Film Festival incorporates the Out of Competition screening of Ennio Morricone’s...

The Jeffrey Epstein Victims Fund has finished paying $ 121 million The Jeffrey Epstein Victims Fund has finished paying $ 121 million
Entertainment2 months ago

The Jeffrey Epstein Victims Fund has finished paying $ 121 million

After awarding more than $ 121 million to about 150 applicants, a compensation program for survivors of Jeffrey Epstein’s sexual...

Matt Roloff and Karyn Chandler move in together, discuss marriage Matt Roloff and Karyn Chandler move in together, discuss marriage
Entertainment2 months ago

Matt Roloff and Karyn Chandler move in together, discuss marriage

Small people, big world star Matt Roloff and his girlfriend, Karyn Chandlerhave revealed their big summer plans in a new...

Mike Shouhed wants Reza Farahan to apologize for being a ‘traitor’ Mike Shouhed wants Reza Farahan to apologize for being a ‘traitor’
Entertainment2 months ago

Mike Shouhed wants Reza Farahan to apologize for being a ‘traitor’

Shouhed says his Shahs of Sunset co-star “cuts deep and says things that are hard to forgive.” While a sexting...

Joey Lawrence and Samantha Cope are engaged Joey Lawrence and Samantha Cope are engaged
Entertainment2 months ago

Joey Lawrence and Samantha Cope are engaged

He put a ring on it! Joey lawrence is engaged to the actress Samantha cope one year after filing for...

Christine Applegate was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis Christine Applegate was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis
Entertainment2 months ago

Christine Applegate was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis

August 10, 2021 Christine Applegate was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS). Christina Applegate The 49-year-old actress took to Twitter on...

UK advertisers form tapestry with clients Coel, Fassbender, Foy – News Block UK advertisers form tapestry with clients Coel, Fassbender, Foy – News Block
Entertainment2 months ago

UK advertisers form tapestry with clients Coel, Fassbender, Foy – News Block

EXCLUSIVE: UK advertisers Donna Mills and Emma Jackson, longtime representatives of London-based Premier Communications, have launched the new advertising agency...

Christina Applegate: actress reveals multiple sclerosis diagnosis Christina Applegate: actress reveals multiple sclerosis diagnosis
Entertainment2 months ago

Christina Applegate: actress reveals multiple sclerosis diagnosis

prime time Emmy-winning actor Christina applegate has revealed a multiple sclerosis condition through a Twitter post late on Monday night....

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle wanted to move to New Zealand in 2018 Prince Harry and Meghan Markle wanted to move to New Zealand in 2018
Entertainment2 months ago

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle wanted to move to New Zealand in 2018

Prince harry and Meghan Markle according to Queen Elizabeth IIRepresentative to New Zealand, Governor General Patsy Reddy… She said Associated...

Alarming new UN climate report says humanity has really screwed itself up Alarming new UN climate report says humanity has really screwed itself up
Entertainment2 months ago

Alarming new UN climate report says humanity has really screwed itself up

The last evaluation of climate science is a “code red for humanity,” the United Nations chief said on Monday, while...

Advertisement

Tech

Tech2 days ago

How to Provide Cybersecurity for Firefox

Mozilla Firefox is one of the first browsers that come to mind when thinking about the best privacy-oriented browsers available...

Tech3 weeks ago

6 Important Questions to Ask Your Internet Provider

Choosing the best internet provider can be challenging, especially when you don’t know what questions to ask. You want to...

Tech4 weeks ago

How Serious is Plagiarism in College?

Studying in college often demands writing essays and course papers. You may study technical subjects and do not have many...

Tech4 weeks ago

Three Possible Ways of How You Can Transfer Contacts from Outlook to iPhone

MS Outlook plays an important role in putting daily life in order, especially with regard to email management. If you...

Tech4 weeks ago

Importance of Email Validation

According to recent stats, 30% of users change their email every year. Therefore, if your mailing list is more than...

Tech4 weeks ago

Before Doing Virtual Staging, Here’s What You Should Know

The majority of people today go online to look for homes. When a potential buyer spots a house online that...

Tech1 month ago

What Technologies are Online Casinos Using?

Online casinos have become an ideal choice for a lot of players, especially because they let players take their games...

Tech2 months ago

Grow Your Brand With These 5 Social Media Tips

Whether you’re operating a new business or working to grow your brand, social media is an excellent place to start....

Tech2 months ago

Is Mining Ethereum Still Profitable in 2021?

Globally, there have been lots of innovations and modernization in different aspects of life. This fact has contributed to the...

Tech2 months ago

Popularity Of the Blockchain Technology: How Familiar Are You with It?

Cryptocurrencies are a form of digital currency that stands out because it is decentralized. Cryptocurrency also stands out because it...

Advertisement
Advertisement