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>Date: Fri, 31 Aug 2001 09:07:05 -0700
>From: "Robert H" <robertpaulh at earthlink_net>
>Subject: Re: Can't be the same

>OK...both aquariumplantdepot and myself import plants from Singapore,
>Oriental Aquarium, the single largest producer of plants in Singapore and
>Asia. Do you think it may be possible that Oriental Aquarium  is selling
>"christmas tree moss" to the states as Java moss?

I will be very, very surprised if the good folks at Oriental Aquarium can't
the difference between Christmas and Java.  I will be even more surprised if
they can tell the difference but choose not to price the Christmas Moss much
higher than Java.  I just spoke to a fish shop owner a few hours ago and she
confirmed that the going price for a hundred grams of Christmas moss is Sing
$40 while the same for Java Moss is only $20.  That's exactly double for
Christmas over Java.  She also confirmed that Oriental uses the name Christmas
moss although they have another name for it too - Triangular moss.  Besides
Taiwan moss, that was the original name until Christmas became more popular.
But don't blame that on me :)  It's the power of the net that makes the

The fish shop owner also said she can't get the moss because Oriental does not
have stocks.  Maybe Oriental is reserving their stocks for a more lucrative
market, I don't really know.  But I do know that the Christmas moss is not
easily available
in Singapore.  Among the many folks who wrote me for the moss last month, 2
my fellow Singaporeans who wanted to know where they can get the moss.
Besides these 2, I have also sent moss to 4 other fellow Singaporeans 3 months
ago when they said they couldn't find it in fish shops.

I don't know anyone in Oriental well enough for me to ask him or her about
their business dealings.  In any case, even if I have a friend working
there, it
wouldn't be right for me to probe.  Oriental does not usually welcome walk-in
visitors and they will probably think I'm a nosey parker if I were to ask them
about their mosses.  I already have a reputation here for being a 'kaypoh'
busybody in Chinese) and I really wouldn't want to enhance that reputation
further :)

But I have been to Oriental once about 2 years ago.  There were about 25 of
us then, all plant hobbyists from Singapore.  We were taken on a guided tour
of the farm by their manager.  He was really nice and took the trouble to
take time off his busy schedule to show us their plants.  I didn't see any
then so I suppose Oriental does not really grow the plant here.  More
likely, the
moss is imported from Taiwan or the neighbouring countries.  It could also be
possible that Oriental grows the moss in their other plant farm in China.
Overheads can be very high in Singapore and many businesses
have chosen to branch out into our neighbouring countries where labour and land
costs are much lower.

Sorry I can't help you much, Robert.  Like I said, I can only tell what I
know which
really isn't very much.  Actually, there's an easy way to find out if my
moss is the same
as the ones you sell.  Just try growing some of mine.  I bet you will find
they are very
different from the ones you are selling.  What I sent you is the same moss
I use
for my moss wall.  That can't possibly be Java, wouldn't you say?

Loh K L