Singapore’s egg supply had been affected in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and Malaysia’s movement restriction order which was implemented back in March, creating fluctuations in the price of eggs.
According to the latest official figures published in 2018 by the Singapore Food Agency (SFA), some 73 per cent of Singapore’s eggs are imported from Malaysia.
Due to concerns over local egg supplies being affected by Malaysia’s then-Movement Control Order (MCO), the demand of eggs had seen a two-fold increase, which subsequently led to a price hike in Singapore, reported by Lianhe Zaobao on 27 April.
However, following the gradual resumption of export activities with Malaysia and Thailand, as well as the egg shipments from Poland, the local egg market then became oversupplied. As a result, a number of egg suppliers were left with no choice but to destroy more than 250,000 eggs in total.
On 14 June, Lianhe Zaobao reported that some egg suppliers’ business have seen a drop of at least one per cent given that the F&B and hospitality industries are still unable to fully resume their regular operations. There was also no festival that required a large sum of eggs at the time, which contributed to the decision to destroy all those eggs.
Some of the businesses reported losses of up to 50 per cent in recent months as compared to the period before the COVID-19 outbreak.
The egg suppliers pointed out that although the imported eggs can be kept in the cold storage for four to six months, the eggs have to be sold quickly in order to maintain the freshness despite not gaining any profit in return. Thus, the eggs that were imported in May were sold at a loss.
“Reluctantly, a batch of eggs imported from Thailand has been destroyed two weeks ago and the number of eggs that were destroyed was more than 250,000,” an egg supplier told Zaobao.
Earlier in March, 300,000 eggs were imported from Thailand to Singapore following Malaysia’s imposition of the MCO. The SFA said in a Facebook post that while country’s food supply was affected by Malaysia’s lockdown, it has activated a “contingency plan to bring in eggs from alternative sources, to test out the process and build up a buffer stock.”
Singapore received the first shipment of eggs from Poland, said Chan Chun Sing
On 5 June, Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing took to his Facebook to announce that Singapore has received the first shipment of eggs from Poland.
“This is another step forward in Singapore’s efforts to diversify our supply sources and enhance the resilience of our food supplies,” he wrote.
Mr Chan explained that the shipments are important as it could help the country to mitigate the supply disruptions and price fluctuations caused by COVID-19 pandemic, adding that Singapore must be psychologically prepared for further global supply uncertainties.
“As we diversify our supplies, not only can we better safeguard our needs, we can also create new opportunities to serve the regional markets,” he remarked.
In addition to the eggs shipment, over 40 containers of food from Poland—that include eggs, frozen vegetables, and fish—are expected to arrive in Singapore in June and July.