Forum: Decades of hard work going to waste as farm's lease expires

Green Circle Eco Farm is a 22-year-old, 2.5ha organic farm in Lim Chu Kang.

The farm will cease to exist when its lease expires at the end of next month.

More than two decades of hard work in nurturing the underlying living soil, chemical-free organic mixed cropping, promoting wildlife activities on the farm, and curating educational knowledge as seen and heard in the numerous onsite tours on sustainable farming practices will go to waste.

Green Circle does not just produce crops for sale and consumption. Its owners, Mr Lim Tian Soo and Mrs Evelyn Eng-Lim, held steadfastly to their ecological values and Green Circle is a biologically diverse mix of living things that spans soil microbes and worms, marketable produce, insects, birds and mammals.

Today in our push for food security, vegetable farming has been modernised, with crops that are grown on artificial media, under indoor lighting, primed by formulated nutrients and monitored via remote sensing.

Modern farming ticks all the boxes in our national development priorities. Green Circle may not pass these pressing policy criteria in this day and time. However, we must not discount the lessons and knowledge gleaned after 22 years of organic soil farming and sound environmental management.

Personally, I am indebted to the Lims for keeping their farm going all these years.

I worked for the Lims at Green Circle when they first took over the land. We cleared the overgrown elephant grass by hand, tilled the soil, nourished it with organic compost, planted the vegetable seeds and harvested the natural produce. I learnt to appreciate the craft of a farmer.

I hope that local youngsters can experience the same kind of connection with the land.

Tan Choon Ming

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