23. Will Walk for Rice

Photo: (Centre) Then-Mayor of South East District, Dr Mohamad Maliki Osman, and then-Group Chief Executive Officer of FairPrice Group, Mr Seah Kian Peng, with residents at Walk for Rice @ South East in 2019. Source: FairPrice Group

What do you walk for? Exercise or simply to get to the other side of the road. But what about walking for rice – to raise funds for the needy and offer them a staple food item on their table?

That was exactly what around 500 people did on November 3, 2022, at the launch of the 14th edition of the annual FairPrice Walk for Rice @ South East. The event at the Sports Hub also marked the physical return of the initiative since the pandemic. It was all smiles as everyone took part in the walk, spin cycling, floor curling and archery at the venue.

The initiative, first launched in 2009 by FairPrice Foundation and South East Community Development Council, aims to rally the community to help needy families residing in the South East region. It also motivates Singaporeans to be more active – for a good cause. The more participants walk, the more rice FairPrice will donate.

In 2009, more than 30,000 people participated and raised half a million bowls of rice for 5,000 needy families by clocking a total mileage of 61,583 km.

Going into 2023, participants can walk or run at their own time or pace. They just have to track their mileage online. The target is to distribute 500,000 bowls of white and brown rice, and 50,000 bowls of instant oats to 7,000 vulnerable families.

Since its launch in 2009, the initiative has clocked a total mileage of 3 million km and donated six million bowls of rice.

Since its humble beginnings in a corner of Toa Payoh, NTUC FairPrice has become the quintessential Singaporean supermarket. The leap from a single store to a grocery giant is a tale of retail reinvention – a half-century journey that saw the cooperative confront crises and challenges, revamps and even robbers.

As it expanded and evolved, FairPrice never wavered from its core mission: to moderate the cost of living for consumers. It Takes a Great Deal - A Catalogue of FairPrice Group Stories encapsulates the birth of the consumer cooperative in 1973 and its transformation into a $4 billion food enterprise that is now called FairPrice Group.

Through 50 remarkable stories, we celebrate the people, products and places that mark significant milestones for the food retailer over the last five decades, charting its growth and successes in the past, present and into the future.