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  • Writer's pictureLouisa Ong

SIP successfully incubated start-up specialising in growing Tropicalised Carnivorous Plants

Just how far can passion fuel you to make a scientific breakthrough? Social Innovation Park is proud to have successfully incubated a start-up that specialises in growing Tropicalised Carnivorous Plants. For Darren Ng (pictured above), an enthusiast of carnivorous plants and founder of SGVenusFlytrap, his genuine curiosity for the exotic plant was enough to trigger his passion to try and grow one at home, which eventually set him on an entrepreneurship journey with Social Innovation Park.

Realising that space is a privilege, SGVenusFlytrap was further incubated at SIP’s SEED (Social Entrepreneurship and Eco-park Development). SIP provided Darren the physical space at an affordable rate as a testbed for him to set up his garden so he could breed the plant in much bigger quantities and be commercially viable. SIP also supports the exploration of new scientific possibilities. At the same time, the space provided his business extra visibility – with members of the public able to visit his garden easily. Over time, Darren’s project grew from a home laboratory to a thriving commercial garden.

It is very uncommon to grow carnivorous plants such as the Venus Flytrap here in tropical climates such as Singapore, as the plants are known for their needs in a temperate climate. After years of extensive research and data collection from experienced growers, Darren achieved an unexpected breakthrough discovery when he chanced upon biotechnology – Plant Tissue Culture. Despite the backlash from pioneer growers who were not convinced by the use of Biotech to change plant behaviour, Darren managed to breed the very first batch of Tropicalised Carnivorous Plants – all from his home laboratory! Soon, many members of the community flocked to his house which prompted Darren to search for a bigger space, and eventually set up his garden at SEED.

As a former Resident Partner of SEED, SIP continues to work closely with Darren and SGVenusFlyTrap by sharing his success story with those in our network, and also creating the opportunity to visit his new garden in person. We are extremely proud of Darren and his contribution to the biotech innovation in Singapore!



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