With limited space for agriculture, Singapore’s farmers must leverage on technology to optimise land-use. As part of our efforts to help the industry raise productivity, AVA CEO Ms Tan Poh Hong led a delegation to Israel on 9-14 June 2013 to identify potential agri-technologies that can be effectively adapted to Singapore’s food farms.
Despite having 60 percent of land covered in desert, Israel successfully developed cutting-edge technology to overcome the challenges of water shortage. Integrated solutions for all processes and systems are put in place at every stage of its agricultural value chain. As a result, Israeli agri-food companies and farmers are able to raise productivity, reduce dependency on manpower, ensure bio-security, as well as conserve energy and water resources. The industry is also supported by institutes of higher learning that are dedicated to the field of agricultural R&D.
During the trip, delegates (comprising participants from AVA, Rong-Yao Pte Ltd, Apollo Aquarium Pte Ltd, Sky Greens Pte Ltd, and Temasek Life Sciences Laboratory) toured several farms and agri-establishments to witness how Israel’s agri-technology is successfully applied. Visits were also made to relevant government agencies, research institutions, and the Fresh Agro Mashov 2013 agriculture exhibition.
KEY LEARNING POINTS Integrated closed loop systems in poultry farming and aquaculture
Environment-controlled Poultry House Need for manpower was reduced and smell nuisance from poultry waste was eliminated by:
- Designing a fully integrated, high-density poultry layer system that operates in a closed environment.
- Implementing automatic monitoring, controlled workflow, and mechanisation of many processes.
- Restricting vehicular entry. Feed delivery and waste collecting vehicles are not allowed into the compound.
- Loading feed and unloading wastes outside the fence, through pipes.
- A highly efficient zero-discharge RAS developed and tested by the Hebrew University and the Agriculture Research Organisation.
- Used in aquaculture, this zero-discharge RAS boasts a series of bio-filters to allow culture water to be continuously recycled and treated, making it highly efficient in water use.
- With lesser water being used, risk of water-borne disease incursion is minimised.
Led by AVA CEO Ms Tan Poh Hong (8th from left), the Singapore delegation, comprising representatives from AVA; Sky Greens Pte Ltd; Apollo Aquarium Pte Ltd; and Temasek Life Science Laboratory, toured the Teshuva Greenhouse, where Mr Avner Shohet (7th from left) introduced the use of hydroponics in his facilities.