Marine Fisheries Research Department

by Tan, Ronnie and Seet, Kevin

First mooted by the Director of Fisheries in 1950, the Marine Fisheries Research Department (MFRD) was established in 1969.1 It was located at Changi Fisheries Complex at Changi Point before moving to Lim Chu Kang Agri-Bio Park in 1999.2 It is currently situated in the Marine Aquaculture Centre on St John’s Island.3


The MFRD is one of the five departments in the Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center.The MFRD’s main objective is to maximise the utilisation of fish for consumption and to reduce wastage of fish resources in Southeast Asia, through the improvement of fisheries post-harvest and processing technologies.5 From studies of fish resource surveying, pelagic fishing resources and coastal fishery management, MFRD has progressed to the research of the processing, handling, preservation and quality assessment of fish and fish products. The centre also disseminates these technologies to the region through training courses, seminars and workshops.6 In addition, MFRD conducts programmes relating to biotoxins monitoring, utilisation of freshwater fish for value-added products, and traceability systems for aquaculture products, among others.7

The MFRD has worked successfully with the seafood processing industry for the latter’s upgrading. In 1988, it played a key role in assisting the establishment of the Seafood Industries Association, Singapore (SIAS), which represents seafood processing, manufacturing and trading companies in Singapore.SIAS and MFRD work closely with other government agencies, such as Enterprise Singapore and the Ministry of Trade and Industry, to advance the industry’s interests.Some of the past programmes implemented by MFRD are Traceability Systems for Aquaculture Products in the ASEAN Region (2010–15),10 Cold Chain Management for Seafood (2015–18)11 and Biotoxins Monitoring in the ASEAN Region (2009–17).12

Selected publications
2002: 
Southeast Asian Fish Products.13

2003: Fermented Fish Sauce in Southeast Asia.14
2005: Maximising Utilisation of Fish Catch – Freshwater Species.15
2008: Compilation of Key Regional Laboratories Validated Methods in Southeast Asia.16
2010: Good Manufacturing Practice for Small and Medium-sized Traditional Fish and Fish Products Processing Establishment in ASEAN.17
2013: Utilisation of Freshwater Fish for Value-added Products.18
2016: Technical Compilation of Traceability Systems for Aquaculture Products in the ASEAN Region.19




Authors
Ronnie Tan & Kevin Seet




References
1. Fish lab for Singapore. (1950, July 21). The Straits Times, p. 8; Singapore takes steps to boost production of fish. (1970, October 8). Singapore Herald, p. 3. Retrieved from NewspaperSG; Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center (SEAFDEC). (2020). About MFRD. Retrieved from SEAFDEC website: www.seafdec.org/mfrd/
2. Chan, K. M. (2000, March 8). 40 years and going strongThe Straits Times, p. 14. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
3. Singapore Food Agency (SFA). (2019). Marine Fisheries Research Department/Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Centre. Retrieved from SFA website: www.sfa.gov.sg/contact-us/marine-fisheries-research-department-southeast-asian-fisheries-development-centre
4. Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center (SEAFDEC). (2020). SEAFDEC structure. Retrieved from SEAFDEC website: www.seafdec.org/structure/
5. Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center (SEAFDEC). (2017). Functions & activities. Retrieved from SEAFDEC website: www.seafdec.org/mfrd/
6. Research centre focus on fishery control, resources. (1977, March 30). The Straits Times, p. 10. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.
7. Raising food traceability capabilities for ASEAN aquaculture industries. (2014). AVA Vision 1, p. 9. Retrieved from Singapore Food Agency website: www.sfa.gov.sg/docs/default-source/publication/ava-vision/ava_visionissue12014lr.pdf
8. Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority (AVA). (2017). AVA’s centres. Retrieved from Web Archive Singapore via NLB’s eResources website: https://eresources.nlb.gov.sg; Seafood Industries Association Singapore (SIAS). (2020). SIAS objectives. Retrieved from SIAS website: http://www.seafoodsingapore.org/aboutus/siasobjectives
9. Seafood Industries Association Singapore (SIAS). (2020). SIAS objectives. Retrieved from SIAS website: http://www.seafoodsingapore.org/aboutus/siasobjectives
10. Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center. (2016). Technical compilation of traceability systems for aquaculture products in the ASEAN region. Singapore: Marine Fisheries Research Department. Available via PublicationSG.
11. Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center (SEAFDEC). (2019). Regional guidelines on cold chain management of fish and fishery products in ASEAN region. Singapore: Marine Fisheries Research Department. Retrieved from SEAFDEC website: http://repository.seafdec.org/handle/20.500.12066/6211
12. Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center. (2012). Technical compilation of biotoxins monitoring in ASEAN region 2009–2012. Singapore: Marine Fisheries Research Department. (Call no.: RSING 597.0959 TEC); Ong, Y., & Chai, H. W. (2019). Technical compilation of biotoxins monitoring in ASEAN region 2015–2017. Singapore: Marine Fisheries Research Department. Retrieved from Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center website: http://repository.seafdec.org/handle/20.500.12066/6231
13. Kok, T. N., et al. (2003). Southeast Asian fish products. Singapore: Marine Fisheries Research Dept. (Call no.: RSING q664.940959 SOU)
14. Kok, T. N., et al. (2003). Fermented fish sauce in Southeast Asia. Singapore: Marine Fisheries Research Dept. (Call no.: RSING q664.940959 KOK)
15. Goh, H. K., & Yeap, S. E. (2005). Maximizing utilization of fish catch – freshwater species. Singapore: Marine Fisheries Research Department. (Call no.: RSEA 338.3727095957 GOH)
16. Tan, L. H., et al. (2008). Compilation of key regional laboratories validated methods in Southeast Asia. Singapore: Marine Fisheries Research Dept, Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center. (Call no.: RSING 639.20720s59 COM)
17. Yeap, S. E., & Thong, D.B.H. (2013). Good manufacturing practice (GMP) for small and medium-sized traditional fish and fish products processing establishment in ASEAN. Singapore: Marine Fisheries Research Dept, Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center. (Call no.: RSING 664.9497 GOO)
18. Yeap, S. E., et al. (2013). Utilisation of freshwater fish for value-added products. Singapore: Marine Fisheries Research Dept, Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center. (Call no.: RSING 338.37270959 YEA)
19. Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center. (2016). Technical compilation of traceability systems for aquaculture products in the ASEAN region. Singapore: Marine Fisheries Research Dept, Southeast Asian Fisheries Development Center. Available via PublicationSG.



Further resources
Major breakthrough in breeding favourite seafood. (1978, June 25). The Straits Times, p. 6. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.

Retaining the freshness of frozen fish. (1982, February 5). The Straits Times, p. 1. Retrieved from NewspaperSG.

Tan, S. B. R. (2000). Information resource management on fisheries: A case study of collection management in the Marine Fisheries Research Department Library. Singapore: Nanyang Technological University, School of Computer Engineering.
(Call no.: RSING q025.27 TAN-[LIB])

Yeap, S. E., et al. (2001). Fish processing industry in Singapore. Singapore: Agrotechnology Division, Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority.
(Call no.: RSING q338.4766494 SIN)



The information in this article is valid as at 31 March 2021 and correct as far as we can ascertain from our sources. It is not intended to be an exhaustive or complete history of the subject. Please contact the Library for further reading materials on the topic.

 

Subject
Business, finance and industry>>Business organization>>Business enterprises
Fisheries--Singapore
Marine resources--Government policy
Science and technology>>Zoology>>Fish
Wildlife
Nature>>Animals
Politics and Government
Fishery processing--Singapore