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Tradition and technology intertwine
One of Singapore’s most beloved farms, Seng Choon has been providing Singaporeans with fresh eggs since 1989.
With second-generation owner Mr Koh Yeow Koon at the helm, the farm moved to its new compound in 2010, adopting new technology while staying true to the family tradition of grit and perseverance. Seng Choon — which occupies a land space of 27 football fields — is home to 850,000 hens, producing 625,000 eggs a day.
Yeow Koon takes you through the complex process of modern egg farming.
Traditional methods of quality control involve using a bright light to check for hairline cracks, leaving room for human error. At Seng Choon, computer scans take 16 different photographs of an egg to ascertain if it is clean or dirty.
While sophisticated, the technology is only 99% accurate — Seng Choon employs its staff to make up the 1% difference. “We want our eggs to be perfect for our consumers,” Yeow Koon explains.
Seng Choon produces 625,000 eggs a day with just 100 workers on the farm. Automation is a key component in achieving this staggering ratio, with many of the farm’s processes being done by machines, or with minimal handling. Feeding systems, temperature controls and waste cleaning systems are just some of the processes that have been automated.
“It’s all about changing the mindset,” Yeow Koon shares. “Of course, using new technology is actually more inefficient for the first few months, as my staff have to get used to how the new machinery works.”
While many processes can be automated, animal handling and husbandry still require a human touch, and is one of the most labour-intensive parts of running the farm.
“We still need to take care of the small chicks — vaccinations are very important,” Yeow Koon says. “With some vaccines, you actually have to catch the chicks before you can vaccinate them. It’s like the BCG injection you had to take in primary school.”
“One of the main benefits of technology is being able to control the environment,” Yeow Koon shares. “It allows us to keep the chickens stress-free, which means that they can realise their full potential.”
Besides a stress-free environment, a lot of thought goes into ensuring that the chickens are adequately fed with a proper range of nutrients. A computer system does the number-crunching for the proportion of produce used to feed the chickens, like maize and soybean.
Learn more about the wondrous world of egg farming — Let’s get cracking!
Besides visual imaging, acoustic signatures can be used to detect hairline cracks in eggs.
Feeding chickens isn’t just chicken feed — the total capacity of feed tanks at Seng Choon comes up to about 4,000 tonnes!
Because chicken don’t have teeth, they need to be fed limestone, which allows them to grind feed in their stomachs.
Eat local and do your part to support our local farming community.
Eager to taste Seng Choon’s eggs for yourself? You’ll be able to buy their fine produce at all major supermarkets and minimarts across the island as well as RedMart.
Keep an eye out for the SG Fresh Produce logo below to sample produce proudly grown and harvested on Singaporean soil.
Managing Director, Seng Choon
Tapping on tradition and technology to feed our city’s future.
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