MENTION “YEO HIAP SENG” to people in Singapore, and most would rightly associate it with soy sauce, beverages and canned curry chicken. But little is known about the person who built up one of Singapore’s most well-known brands – Mr Yeo Thian In, a first-generation Chinese immigrant from Fujian Province, China who arrived on our shores in 1938 with his wife and young sons in tow.
More significantly, through the hardships he endured – the gruelling challenges of the world war, personal tragedies, political and business cycles – Yeo Thian In’s story is one of a deep abiding faith in the Lord and inspiring Christian witness.
It is now told for the first time in a recently published book, The Soy Sauce Towkay, commissioned by his youngest son, the Rev Alfred Yeo, to mark the 25th anniversary of Yeo Thian In’s death in 1985. The book testifies to God’s hand of protection, grace and mercy right through Thian In’s life and legacy.
As I carried out my work in Ulu Belaga and enjoyed the protein supplied by the Church, two tins of curried chicken and two tins of sardines, I praise God for Yeo Hiap Seng who initiated the canning industry in Singapore.
Because of him and his work, we who work in the remotest village of the Belaga/Kapit Division can enjoy good food!! We appreciate the nourishment provided by the Church group and the legacy of Yeo Hiap Seng.
How provident is our God!!
Yeo Hiap Seng's Curry Chicken is very delicious. Just open the can and heat up the contents. 9 people can easily enjoy the dish and feel good!! When there is very little water to do cleaning etc. canned food is the best resort.
This is our dinner table for the 9 of us from Miri. Two vegetables, fried rice (from over night rice we could not finish the day before) and a bit of freshly cooked rice. We are thankful that we can use the electricity generator to cook our rice. We also brought along this Japanese rice cooker.
This is a wonderful dish made up of big onions and Yeo's sardines.
It is so easy to break into praise when you are in the Ulu and experiencing a wonderful connection with God and His wonderful earth.
- Praise God, from whom all blessings flow;
- Praise him, all creatures here below;
- Praise him above, ye heavenly host;
- Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Amen.
Thank you Yeo Thian In and your canned foods which gave us sustenance throughout the days of our work in the ulu parts of Sarawak.