Celebrating 50 made-in-Singapore products
The National Heritage Board celebrates SG50 with an exhibition commemorating Singapore’s manufacturing history and showcases 50 products.
You would be hard-pressed not to see anything unfamiliar in this 50 Made-in-Singapore Products exhibition at the National Museum of Singapore. You might even discover that the items that you know well were actually made in Singapore and are still being manufactured here!
The exhibition, which commemorates Singapore’s 50th year of independence, has a collection of 50 made-in-Singapore products that span different categories such as fashion, F&B, electronics and IT, medicine, etc. Items in the exhibition include: Eveready batteries, Lam Soon cooking oil, Nippon paint, Bata shoes, Trek thumb drives, Knife brand cooking oil, Kiwi shoe polish and Bridgestone tyres.
The 50 Made-in-Singapore Products exhibition is a culmination of National Heritage Board’s (NHB) efforts, since 2012, to research and document Singapore’s manufacturing industry. Following a preview exhibition last year, this exhibition introduces 30 new locally manufactured products including lesser-known brands such as Star Brand Jaggery Sugar, Double Prawn brand herbal oils, Lea Hin Butterfly brand kerosene lamps and Robertson amplifiers.
For this exhibition, NHB collaborated with 36 partner companies, which contributed their products, dating from the 1930s to the 1990s, for display. The exhibition also showcases the history of the products, and Singapore’s manufacturing history and achievements through the years. The exhibition has texts alongside the objects, as well as multimedia content.
The chairman of NHB, Ong Yew Huat, shared during the launch of the exhibition: “When I was a student, I remembered how happy I was to receive a gleaming new pair of white Bata shoes at the start of every school year. I also remember applying bottled white starch on my shoes after washing them and sometimes, I even used chalk to ‘whiten’ my dirtied shoes after a game of catching or football.
“Likewise, when I was serving my National Service, I remembered looking forward to enjoying a can of Amoy Canning’s Curry Chicken after a long day of training in the field. I also remembered going through cans after cans of Kiwi shoe polish in order to ensure that my army boots meet my platoon sergeant’s strict inspection standards.”
He added that through the exhibition, he hopes visitors will be “transported back to our pasts when viewing the products and be encouraged to share their fond memories of using these products with their families and friends”.
“Most importantly, I hope that the exhibition will be able to evoke a sense of wonder at the products invented by many of our pioneering companies back in the early days and to instil a sense of pride in the achievements of Singapore as a manufacturing base and the pioneering spirit of many of our local companies as we celebrate SG50 this year.”
The 50 Made-in-Singapore Products exhibition will be on display at the National Museum of Singapore’s Glass Atrium from now till September 6, 2015, and entry will be free for all visitors.