Food Farms

Starting a Farm

Step 1: Useful resources to get started

A farm refers to any land or premises, whether enclosed by fencing, that is used for the keeping, rearing, breeding or boarding of food animals or birds for commercial purposes or the cultivation of food plants for commercial production.

If you are setting up a land-based farm in Singapore, you may refer to:

·          Starting a Farm: An Industry Guide. This guide will provide an overview of the regulatory requirements, procedures you will need to follow, information on the various documents, fees and timelines involved, etc. This guide also introduces the government agencies and departments overseeing the necessary permits should you wish to contact them to make specific enquiries.

For Qualified Persons and relevant professionals, you may refer to:

·         Building a Food Resilient Future webinar, which provides an understanding of the local agri-food tech sector and the opportunities it offers. You may refer to the Webinar Presentation Slides and compiled Questions and Answers for more information.


Step 2: Submission of Farm Plan

Once you have secured the premises for your farm, engage a Qualified Person (registered Architect or Professional Engineer) to prepare and submit a farm plan through CORENET to SFA for endorsement. SFA will assess and process submissions made in CORENET within 2 weeks from the complete submission of required documents. The submission should include the following documents:

Authorisation letter by farm owner

·         Justification for proposed works

·         Site Plan

·         Section Plans

·         Elevation Plans

·         Floor Plan (for buildings or sheltered structures)

·         Roof Plan (for buildings or sheltered structures)

·         Schedule for proposed works

 

If Earthworks are involved, the following additional information are to be included:

  • Topographical Survey Plan
  • Proposed and Existing platform levels
  • Justification for proposed earthworks
  • Source of Earth for the earthworks
  • Type of Earth for the earthworks
  • Volume of Earth to be brought into the farm for the earthworks

Thereafter, seek the remaining clearances from the relevant agencies (e.g. URA, BCA, NEA, NParks, SCDF). Please check your submission carefully. If there are subsequent amendments to the farm plan, you will need to appoint a Qualified Person to submit the revised plans for clearance with the relevant agencies.

Incorporating Visitor Amenities on Farms

To maximise the productivity of Singapore’s limited agricultural land, farms are required to use at least 90% of the farm area for production and production-related uses while all ancillary uses (e.g. office, carpark, workers quarters) are to be capped within 10% of the farm area. Visitor amenities on farms are considered an ancillary use.


The Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) has drawn up the following guidelines for farm operators who are interested to include visitor amenities on their farms:

Type of Use

Maximum allowable Gross Floor Area

· Restaurant, showroom, shop

· For sale of farm and non-farm products, e.g. souvenirs

200 sqm

· Visitor centre

· For use as a museum or education centre to showcase farm-relatedexhibits like its local history

200 sqm

 

If you would like to include visitor amenities on your farm, you will need to engage a Qualified Person to submit the following documents to SFA for endorsement:

·         Development plans for the proposed visitor amenities

·         Business proposals

The plans will need to be cleared with URA and the relevant agencies thereafter. Differential premium will be levied for the visitor amenities, if applicable.

Renewal of Land Lease and Tenancy

Land leases and tenancies have specified tenures. Applications for the renewal of leases and tenancies will be considered based on its own merits, in conjunction with the Government’s long-term plans for the land and in consultation with public agencies.

To apply for renewal of lease or tenancy, existing farm owners can write to the lessor or reach out to their SFA Farm Account Manager for assistance.

Step 3: Applying for a Farm Licence

To apply for a farm licence:

1. Submit a Farm Business Proposal here to SFA for evaluation. Click here for detailed information on the submission of a Farm Business Proposal. SFA will inform the applicant on the evaluation outcome within 2 months from the date of submission of the Farm Business Proposal.

2. Applicants who received SFA’s approval on the Farm Business Proposal can proceed to submit a licence application here within 10 months from the date of approval. Supporting documents should be obtained and submitted together with the licence application. These include approvals from:

·                     BCA – for Temporary Occupation Permit (TOP) or Certificate of Structural Completion (CSC)

·                     NEA – for pollution control

·                     URA – for change of land use

Click here for Application Information for Licence for Farm.

SFA will contact applicants by email within 25 working days from the date of submission, to follow up on the application.

Licensing conditions

For more information on the Licensing Conditions, please refer to the respective attachments below:

Biosecurity guidelines for aquaculture farms

SFA has developed guidelines for aquaculture farms to monitor and implement biosecurity measures. For more information, please refer to the attached guidelines.