Under the regulations set out by the National Environment Agency (NEA), it is illegal to collect fallen fruits from forested areas or open fields.
In the Netherlands, rich people place apples from trees they grow and place it in plastic bags on their fences for the less well -off to pick up. Fruits are a good source for vitamins and not everyone can afford it.
While there are concerns that the fruit may have expired, an unwritten cause could be put in place to protect the giver from being sued for food contamination.
In Singapore there are some 1,000 Singaporeans who are homeless and they could do with some meals, including fruits.
Fallen fruits need not be forbidden fruits. Some flexibility could be exercised to help poorer citizens.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong mentioned last night that his party will have to fight hard to win the next elections which is just around the corner.
The PAP can win the full support of the electorate if it is willing to help the needy – and therefore it is crucial for it to come up with suitable programmes to take care of the poor.
Some places that grow fruit trees like mangoes, coconuts and durians such as in condos can offer fruits to the poor. Mangoes sliced and mixed with grounded chilies make a nice sambal to go with plain porridge. The poor are not choosy.
I would therefore propose that fruits grown in open places can be collected when they are ripe, perhaps by volunteers like the grassroots leaders or government agency staff and when approved for consumption bring it to nursing homes or to food distribution groups for the needy. It is far better to pass the fruits to the needy than to have it rot on the grounds.
I would appreciate a reply from the said ministries.
Raymond Anthony Fernando