Three companies were fined recently in Singapore for violating food safety regulations.

Lee Peng Hwa, the proprietor of LPH Catering, was told to pay SG $12,000 (U.S. $8,900) for multiple offenses committed under the Sale of Food (Non-Retail Food Business) Regulations.

Alternative Selection Pte, a food processing company and retailer, was fined SG $6,400 ($4,700) for tampering with expiry dates on prepacked food products.

Go Go Foods Singapore Pte, a licensed food importer, was fined SG $3,500 ($2,600) for operating an unlicensed cold store. Director Yatagawa Koichi was also charged the same amount for failing to prevent the offense.

In May 2023, the Ministry of Health (MOH) and Singapore Food Agency (SFA) received reports of illness involving 57 people who consumed food prepared by LPH Catering. An investigation at the company’s plant found multiple problems, such as improper thawing of meat, non-separation of chopping boards for raw and cooked food, and a dirty ice machine.

In April 2022, SFA officers inspected the premises of Alternative Selection Pte. They found various pre-packed products with tampered and extended date markings, including those already expired. All implicated food products were seized and destroyed. Under food regulations, no person shall remove, erase, alter, obscure, superimpose, or tamper with any date mark on any prepackaged food.

In June 2023, SFA officers inspected the Go Go Foods Singapore Pte plant and found meat and seafood products, such as beef and crabmeat, stored in chest freezers and chillers. The premises are not licensed as a cold store, so 1,580 kilograms of food products were seized.

All storage facilities for meat and seafood products must be licensed and must meet SFA’s requirements and food safety standards. SFA inspects these premises to ensure compliance.

Other cases of illegal food imports
In another case, the court fined Tung Lok Millennium Pte SG $3,000 ($2,200) for breaching legislation.

In June 2022, the Ministry of Health and Singapore Food Agency received reports of gastroenteritis involving 27 people who fell ill after reportedly consuming food catered by the company.

An investigation found that a sample of ready-to-eat washed salad prepared by the kitchen staff failed the microbiological limits set in the food regulations. The overhead air-conditioning unit in the cold kitchen was also poorly maintained.

Finally, almost 3 tons of food products were seized in two operations by SFA and the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA).

In the first case, SFA seized around 1.5 tons of fresh produce and processed food imported illegally from Malaysia. Findings included undeclared and under-declared produce such as bayam, chili padi, spring onion, brinjal, peeled garlic, and cut cabbage by three importers in two trucks.

In March 2024, SFA and ICA targeted vegetable delivery trucks entering Singapore via Woodlands Checkpoint. These trucks typically transport produce for direct distribution to retailers and customers.

SFA said that only licensed firms can import fruits and vegetables, and every consignment must be declared and accompanied by a valid import permit. Illegally imported vegetables are of unknown sources and can pose a safety risk.

An earlier operation confiscated around 1.4 tons of illegally imported food products from Thailand.

In February 2024, officers from ICA at Tuas Checkpoint routinely checked trucks containing food products. During these controls, officers noticed discrepancies in the consignment transported by a Malaysia-registered truck and referred it to SFA for further checks.

SFA found 1.4 tons of undeclared products, including meat and meat products, fruits and vegetables, seafood, and processed food. Further investigations are ongoing.

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