TANJONG KARANG: a new granary of Malaya [Main Title]
Government information film about a coastal irrigation and rice growing scheme. Tanjong was once a vast wilderness of swamp and forest. Yet Malaya urgently needed more rice-land. So, with modern machines, the jungle was felled and the swampy rivers canalised. Then the new settlers came in to till the ground and, in due course, gather the first harvest.
Malaya imports food, buying rice from abroad with money desperately needed for schools and homes. Tanjong Karang is an attempt to increase domestic rice production. The film recounts a brief history of the scheme, begun in 1933, but neglected during the Japanese occupation and restarted in 1945. There is a brief explanation of the natural mechanism of the swamplands, and the methods used to exclude the sea and control the river waters. When the land is safe from flood, the first settlers construct homes. These men are "real pioneers", and each is given a small plot and a monetary grant to assist in clearing the land. Further help is provided by a measure of mechanisation and advice from government experts and the Planters' Council. The film follows the progress of the settlers' first year on the land, culminating in the first successful rice crop - "the rewards of labour are being reaped, food for the empty bowl". Tanjong Karang leads the way for other such schemes and eventual Malayan self-sufficiency.