How We Began…
The story of Bollywood Veggies started in 2000, shortly after Ivy Singh and her husband Lim Ho Seng shelved plans to move to Perth. With the death of a dear friend, the couple pondered the direction their lives would take in their retirement years. Unwilling to waste away on a golf course, and cherishing their local friendships, the duo considered wider options.
When they chanced upon a newspaper story about farming in Singapore, they decided to investigate further. Exploring the Kranji countryside, they talked with the few remaining farmers and explored what land was available. The idea of starting a farm was conceived then, and in spite of logistical and bureaucratic hurdles, Ivy and Ho Seng established the farm. They successfully tendered for a lease on 10 acres of land and Bollywood Veggies was born. The name Bollywood Veggies was chosen because of Ivy’s half-Indian heritage, and also to reflect the enthusiasm and boisterous personality of the farm.
With the help of then Minister of State for National Development Dr. Vivian Balakrishnan, Ivy and a small band of visionary farmers pushed for changes in government agencies and regulations to expand the facilities and offerings of farms to include recreational spaces and F&B. In 2004/2005, Poison Ivy on Bollywood Veggies farm opened its doors and the Kranji Countryside Association was established to promote the countryside as a destination for all.
Since then, the farm has grown from strength to strength, adding a culinary school and a museum in 2009. The company makes it a point to hire challenged and less fortunate Singaporeans, creating employment opportunities for marginalized groups. The farm is run as sustainably as possible with no pesticides or fertilizers used on site, effectively making it a planet-friendly operation.
Ivy was the president of the Kranji Countryside Association from 2005 to 2014, when she stepped down to make way for young energy. She continues to vocally represent local farmers and champion their issues.