“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.
“When was the last time you did something for the first time?”
This year has been especially life-changing for me, both literally and figuratively. In Sep 2015, our family welcomed a game changer- a Baby (!) into our lives.
There have been so many firsts over the past year. First time bringing Baby back home into the farm. His first interaction with frogs; His first taste of meat;
His first smile (where people have commented on how much it resembles my Father’s smile); His first words; His first steps; his first appearance on mainstream TV.
These moments certainly reminds myself of my first tour, first project, first hire, first interview, first renovation; these firsts made up the first decade of working alongside with my family on the farm.
This coming 29th Oct 2016, JFF celebrates our 35th Anniversary and it also marks my 1 year and 1 month of motherhood. There have indeed been many firsts over the past year. And that should be much more firsts to come, not just for ourselves but for JFF as well.
While we are unsure about the eventual move out of this farmland, we are also thankful for the lease extension to the end of 2019. As they say, rest is for the wicked. To stay relevant in this industry, we’ll have to continuously innovate, diversify, and R&D into new frog products.
Most recently, We’ve launched our Collagreen Mosquito Repellent Moisturizing Lotion. It’s a first of its kind of moisturizing artisan product with an added mosquito repellent function. It contains 10% bioactive collagen which are purified and extracted from American bullfrog skin. This idea would have been inconceivable and probably remained an idea if we haven’t met the right partners and married science and tech into a very conventional farming business.
Now we can proudly claim that our frogs used quite to the fullest to combat the mozzies!!
Lastly, I will like to extend my heartfelt gratitude to all our customers who have supported JFF over the years and some of you who witness my transitions in life on this farm. To all the pre-schoolers hopping around our farm, primary school students energetic for herpetology knowledge, tertiary students getting in-depth insights to running a family business and the weekend visitors coming to JFF to escape the hectic city life with their families and their children to catch frogs or enjoy a sumptuous plate of frog meat. Thank you!
Hi! My name is Muhammad Azrul aka Frosch, your helpful and hopefully (going to be) amazing froggie guide who has just hopped into Jurong Frog Farm! Frosch is a German word for Frog and also a character name of a cat disguised as a frog from an Anime series ‘Fairy Tail’. The reason why I choose that because the attributes of the cat is positive and happy-go-lucky like me!
My first week as an intern here can only be described as busy! I was kept occupied as there were just so many aspects of the business to learn. It was tiring and scary at first but I still keep my spirit up.
The first few days I felt pressurized with the amount of work needed to be done and especially afraid on conducting the tour all by myself. When I did my first dry run of the ‘Gabbe’s Adventure’ with Mr. Jackson at the “hands on the frog” station, I felt relieved and in fact quite proud that I have stepped out of my comfort zone with this public speaking challenge!
I was even tasked to explain about the parts of the frogs to the kids of Swiss School in Singapore. From that experience, I was sure I’ll be a better frog guide/host for future tours! I also learned about more different things in the retailing sector where I got to learn the use of the cash register and the website systems used to manage online orders and tour bookings.
All in all, the week was productive and I was greeted with smiling and friendly customers who were patient with me knowing that it was the first week of my internship!
“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.”
Come celebration the joyous occasion of Christmas with us!! This year, we will be having a Xmas Special promotion! All you have to do is share that you have bought the Gabbe’s Family Tour online and receive a 10% DISCOUNT!! The promotion period is from 15 Dec – 31 Dec, and tickets bought during this promotional period will be valid until the March holidays! Just enter your preferred date of tour at the checkout page!!
Note: Your tour booking will only be confirmed upon a confirmation call/email from our JFF staff.