Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Research Update on 14Aug07

1) Called Lily at AVA and found out that vegetable imports stats are available from Ministry of Trade and Industry, International Enterprise Singapore.

2) Went to IE Singapore website and found out statistics publication cost money. so called their hotline. At hotline, asked for the operator which transfered me to Tricia. Tricia informed me that to get the stats free I can go to their Library at Bugis Junction Office Tower Level 7. Opened 9-6pm on Mon to Fri. There, the librarian can help me find specific cities possibly.

3) Called Lily at AVA again to find out if they know the cities and was informed that they don't. Asked if they are the secretariat of the Singapore Fruits and Vegetable Importers and was told they are unrelated. Was given the phone number for SFV (page 13 Aug). Must ask SFV where they import from. Must ask her who in charge of Riau Vegetable Project. She also told me there is no accreditation for vegetables, unlike meat products. Meat products they have site inspection but mostly accreditation is done on government-government level. They welcome all fresh fruits and vegetables and only do inspection at point of entry. They quarantine briefly to run labtest on residues, etc. Check if can interview her - questions on page 14Aug.

4) Did a newspaper check on factiva and found no news on Brastagi but instead found the Riau vegetable project at Pekanbaru (capital of Riau) which was established in 2002 by AVA and Riau government with a total of $2million SGD and "benefit 550 farmers working on 10 farms spanning 11ha". Also found out that 70% of Singapore's vegetable import comes from Malaysia (year unsure) while 50% of Cameron Highland's produce is exported to Singapore (1999). Files are saved as "vegetable articles x.pdf" in the newspaper articles folder.

5) Checked with Ina on pekanbaru and she got me a contact from her friend Stepi who works for EU Commission in Indonesia. Stepi's collegemate from Bogor, Mustajab will connect me with businesses, govt and NGO in Pekanbaru. He already knows that I'm doing agriculture in Pekanbaru.

6) Savage suggest doing Pekanbaru and Brastagi then later decided just Pekanbaru will do but I am keeping Brastagi as an option. Must write full proposal ASAP.

7) Decided to go down to the IE Singapore library on Thursday.

8) A chat with Kenneth Pinto reminds me if our import really significantly affect that area and is vegetables significant to Singapore? Singaporeans consume 83kg of vegetable per year per capita. But 4 million of 83kg is a lot more but what percentage is this of total production in source country. Stats from food stats.pdf in the AVA Annual Report folder.

9) Got reminded about corporate airfare - must check with Pauline if airfare is required to be through school if I wish to claim.

10) Got a form to fill up for access to GIS lab. Must ask Higgitt if I need to use geolab for soil tests. Read up on methods.

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