Wet markets make a world of difference

MY 77-YEAR-OLD mother drew my attention to last Saturday’s commentary by Ms Jessica Lim, ‘Time for wet markets to go’.

Ms Lim has not seen some of the better-run wet markets, such as the ones in Tiong Bahru and Bukit Batok East Avenue 4.

My mother and I do the bulk of our weekly grocery shopping at FairPrice Finest and Shop & Save at West Mall, but we visit the two wet markets every month to get items which we either cannot find (surprise, surprise) or which cost far more at the supermarkets.

Like Ms Lim, I have seen some of the fresh produce markets in First World countries. However, she should remember that many folk who frequent wet markets here have never been to a First World country. The cleanliness is something we must try to emulate – Tiong Bahru, for example, is much cleaner than it used to be.

But the market smell is also related to the climate. In England, household refuse is collected once a week – something which would be unthinkable here.

My mother’s face lights up whenever we go to Tiong Bahru wet market, where she has shopped regularly for more than 20 years. The market is a half-hour drive from our home in Hume Avenue, but my mother’s happiness alone makes the hour-long round trip worthwhile.

Joanne Tay (Ms)

See also : Space for wet markets

See also : Wet markets need extreme makeover

Source : Straits Times – 26 Oct 2009

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