The SUSS Agri-preneur Incubation Programme (AIP) aims to empower young entrepreneurs to tackle Singapore's food safety and security challenges by fostering innovative startup ideas, working towards “30 by 30” – to build up our agri-food industry's capability and capacity to sustainably produce 30% of our nutritional needs by 2030.
In collaboration with our industry partner, Nutrious Farms, SUSS has established an Experiential Urban Farm on the rooftop of our campus. The farm was fully operational for the AIP February 2023 batch of students and has provided them with a unique opportunity to engage in urban agriculture in a hands-on method. The farm is designed to allow students to experience the entire process of planting, growing, and harvesting their crops, and learn about the different stages of crop growth and cultivation. Students also get to explore soil-based and hydroponic farming techniques.
Students diligently tilling the soil at the rooftop farm.
Through this experiential learning opportunity, students learned the fundamentals of agriculture and the business skills required to identify market opportunities and launch an impact-driven venture. As they worked with crops and observe growth cycles, they gained insights into the challenges faced by farmers and are encouraged to develop innovative solutions to address them.
This programme hence fosters a culture of innovation, where students are encouraged to think creatively and experiment with new ideas. The most promising concepts will then be further developed through the SUSS Venture Builder Programme, an intensive training programme that provides access to training workshops, funding, mentorship, and other resources to help bring these ideas to fruition.
Hydroponic and soil-based crops ready for harvest.
After weeks of ploughing, seeding, and transplanting, AIP students’ hard work finally paid off as they proudly harvested their first crop on 1st April 2023. The students were thrilled to see the fruits of their labour and excitedly prepared to distribute their fresh produce. In the spirit of giving back to the community, the students showed their appreciation for the university's cleaning staff. As the cleaners had been working hard to maintain a clean and healthy learning environment for the entire university, the students prepared 30 packs of harvest and gave them out to the cleaners as a gesture of gratitude.
AIP students handing out fresh produce to SUSS cleaners.
SUSS Dean of Students, Dr Yap Meen Sheng, sharing the bounty.
This experience highlights the significance of giving back to the community and encourages students to continue fostering a culture of generosity and social responsibility. SUSS and Nutritious Farms also hope to inspire a new generation of urban farmers who are passionate about sustainable agriculture and food safety and security.
Do watch out for a unique shopping experience at the AIP Bazaar this year, where AIP students will be selling their produce, with all proceeds going to SUSS Student Care Fund!