“When Mr Wan Bock Thiaw goes to sleep each night, he usually hears a cacophony of croaking.
It is the mating call of thousands of bullfrogs in the backyard of his single-storey house in Lim Chu Kang.
To him, it is a lullaby which sends him deeper into dreamland. The croaking means more baby frogs will be produced for his family-run frog breeding business.”
This was an excerpt taken in 21 July 1997 from The Straits Times, entitled ‘Frog porridge anyone? – Jumping frog legs, aren’t they popular?’
1997 was almost 10 years ago and now that his children are all grown up, he could finally take a well-deserved break. But does he? Farmers never rest and rest is for the wicked, words from Jackson and Chelsea respectively. Mr Wan certainly understands and embodies the value of hard work which he clearly imparts to his children.
His daughter Chelsea joined the business 10 years ago in 2006 after graduating from NUS with a Sociology degree. When asked if she feels that her daughter has “wasted” her degree, Mr Wan earnestly replied, “行行出状元”. Anybody can excel in any line of work and industry as long as they devote their heart into it. Now that his son Jackson has joined the business, the Wan frog family is stronger and more united than ever.
Now as JFF celebrates its 35th Anniversary, Mr Wan still remains very active in the farm. He still wakes up as early as 6am in the morning to check on the husbandry on the farm. Occasionally, he still delivers the orders himself to old and loyal customers in the wee hours, many of whom have become friends with him by now.
With his daughter and son working side by side with him now, Mr Wan understands and appreciates that everybody is an important asset to the company. Each individual’s actions are the building blocks to JFF’s vision for high quality frog products and the persistence for this vision need to be translated to the customers through these individuals.
“Writing a letter of appreciation is something I’ve never done before, but from now onwards, I will make it a point to write one for every Christmas because it’s so meaningful.
There are so many people in my life I want to thank. Naturally, the first people I want to thank is my family. Even though sometimes they are unreasonable, but ultimately, they just purely care for me and my wellbeing. I want to thank my parents for providing me financial support for my whole life up to the second month of internship, because that was when I got my first pay and I weaned off their money and started using my own instead. Without their support financially or mentally, I don’t think I would have been able to survive in this world. I want to thank my sister for always being a listening ear to me, giving me wise advice when I don’t know who else to turn to. She can be very annoying at times, but when she’s not, she’s a delight to be with. (I know I annoy her too.)
The next people I want to thank are my friends. They have kept me going throughout my whole poly life, made school so much more interesting, and made my life a much more enjoyable one. Without them, I wouldn’t be the person that I am today, because they all have influenced the moulding of my personality in order to deal with the harsh world.
Next, I want to thank my boyfriend for “training” me to become a less annoying person, and to have a better temper. Before I met him, my temper was atrocious. Maybe not towards my friends, but towards closer people in my life. He has taught me that not everything will go my way because people sometimes don’t meet my expectations, and I can’t flare up at them because of that.
Last but not least, I would like to thank my JFF friends for accepting me so warmly into the JFF family. When I make any mistakes, I will get corrected in a nice way. I have indeed learnt a lot from working here, and I dare say that I’m not the same person I was at the start of internship in terms of personality.”
“”In the spirit of Christmas, there are many things to be thankful for. But what strikes a chord this season is the love of a family. This year my family have stood by me to help me through some tough and challenging emotional setbacks. They have become my pillar of support to be thankful for which have kept me going. Their encouragements and prayers are a comfort to my soul knowing that they will always be there for me when I am in need. Their simple actions like buying meals and sending me to work exemplifies their boundless love and care. This season, I celebrate the spirit of love with my love ones and I hope you will too.”
“There are so many people whom I have to say a BIG THANK YOU to! Many who have joined us at some point in this froggie biz. Firstly Mel, who has been with us for 16 months, now, is most responsible with her backend duties and reliable as a frontline combat soldier.
Anna, who supported us in the 2nd quarter is the sunshine of the farm. I finally got married, much credits to her, Mel and Kaiting who held the fort for, most of the weekends!
Many thanks to James, the staunch supporter to JFF, who has introduced Charlane, now our Frogician to us. I always see that childlike innocence in her especially when she flashes her signature megawatt smile. Thank you, Frogician for training my patience and reminding me constantly on the appreciation of simple pleasures! To Felicia, our Froglette, who shines as a task exterminator. She is always asking for things to do so that she can write it on and strike it off her To Do list.
To Mrs Frog, aka Mum, for preparing our meals so that we work hard knowing that there is always a warm meal waiting for us at the mid and the end of the day.
To the rest of our team of production workers and drivers! What is JFF without each and anyone of your contribution?? Much gratitude too to all our dear friends and customers.”