Memories of School Tuckshops in the Past


With courtesy of Blueninja Ng of “The Good Old Days Singapore” group on Facebook, I am pleased to be inspired by his recent post and share the memories of school tuckshops in the past.

I have previously posted a related blog here .   Pls take a look at these old nostalgic photos of the school tuckshops in Singapore in the past.


Tuck into healthier fare

Tuckshop programme on, but students must play part, too

By Reeta Raman
[TODAY, 2 August 2005]

Call it the silent “diet”, but without much fanfare, many schools in Singapore have already taken steps to produce healthier menu for their students.

Most children eat at least one meal a day from school tuckshops on most days of the week.

And because eating habits that are cultivated early in life have an influence later in life, the nutritive value of foods served in tuckshops play an important role in determining the child’s health and well-being, said Ms Seah Peik Ching, a nutritionist with the nutrition programme at the Health Promotion Board (HPB).

It is for thiese reasons and more that approximately 80 per cent of schools in Singapore have voluntarily participated in the Model School Tuckshop Programme since it was launched in 2003.

Singapore schools are not alone in their desire to whip their tuckshop menus into better shape.

Over the past year in the United States, efforts to shape up school nutrition standards intensified as concerns mounted over the increasing number of school-age obese children.

States such as Texas, Washington and Chicago are reducing snack portions by setting ceilings for calories.

Efforts to promote healthy eating in school tuckshops in Singapore started in 1992, with the introduction of the Trim and Fit (TAF) programme.

The tuckshop programme was recently introduced to provide an incentive for schools to make healthier food choices available in tuckshops.

It encourages tuckshop vendors to meet seven guidelines, such as restricting the sale of deep-fried food and preserved meat once a week, and using skinless poultry and lean meat.


  • Eat the first meal of the day with your children to encourage the habit of having breakfast
  • Plan and supervise two meals (for example, breakfast and dinner) at home daily.
  • Set a good example by getting to know food facts and values and encourage your child to eat healthy and to exercise regularly.

Pupils get a taste of healthy eating

[Source:  The Straits Times, 8 November 2002]

Ask Tun Mun Chun, 12, whether he prefers fruits and vegetables or burgers, and he barely hesitates over his reply.

“I’d choose fruits and vegetables.  They’re very tasty and healthier than burgers,” said the Primary 6 pupil from Townsville Primary School. “Burgers are very oily.”

He and other students watched a skit on 7 November, 2002 about the benefits of eating fruits and vegetables.”

They also received an apple each as part of a Health Promotion Board scheme to distribute apples to pupils of 165 primary schools.

More than 70,000 apples were given out over two days.

The board’s message to the pupils to eat two servings each of fruits and vegetables every day.

Ms Janet Loo, the board’s executive in charge of the Fruits and Vegetables Day programme, said: “You give them the apples and they will eat them immediately.

“That’s the call for action we’re looking for.”

A 1999 study of more than 700 Chinese Singaporeans found that those who develop the habit of eating fruits and vegetables from a young age are three times more likely to eat, or attempt to eat, the recommended amount of these foods when they are adults.


Shot in the arm
Typhoid jabs for all tuckshop vendors

[Source:  New Nation, 26 January 1976]


Ouch! Madam Wee Hiang Lye, who sells sweets at the Singapore Vocational Institute, grimaces as she is inoculated against typhoid by Staff Nurse Puah Swee Kim.

Madam Wee and 12 other tuckshop vendors at the institute lined up for the injections by a team from the Ministry of Environment.

This is part of the Ministry’s mass campaign to immunise all tuckshop vendors against typhoid to safeguard the health of Singapore’s 500,000 school children.

All 2476 stallholders working in school canteens will be inoculated against typhoid by the end of April, 1976,

Although the jab gives protection against the outbreak of the disease, the hawkers must still practise proper personal hygience when preparing food.

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