Singapore is having a chicken – not problem, but a hiccup.
In case you missed it, Malaysia announced on May 23, 2022 that due to the shortage of chicken and soaring prices, it would stop the export of up to 3.6 million chickens a month from June 1 onwards, until domestic prices and production stabilise.
This led to consumers in Singapore clearing out shelves of fresh chicken to stock up over the past few days.
But wait a minute.
Buying shelves of fresh chicken? The only possible way to store those chicken is to freeze them.
Buying fresh chicken to freeze rather than buying frozen chicken?
Cue Ministry of Sustainability and the Environment (MSE).
In response to consumers behaving like headless chickens, MSE published a meme on May 26, inspired by the hit sitcom The Office, explaining why there’s no need to sweep up fresh chicken.
Here it is.
It added in the captions that buying frozen chicken is actually fresher.
“Actually, compared to chicken bought fresh and frozen slowly in home freezers, commercially-available frozen chicken is typically flash-frozen (that is, frozen quickly at very low temperatures) by poultry suppliers shortly after slaughter. This not only ensures optimum freshness, the rapid freezing process reduces the formation of ice crystals, which helps preserve the nutrients and texture of the chicken!” it said in the Facebook post.
MSE urged consumers to remain flexible and adaptable about their purchasing decisions.
According to MSE, Singapore Food Agency (SFA) is working with the industry to manage the chicken supply situation in Singapore by activating supply chains to increase imports of chicken from alternative sources, and drawing from existing stocks of poultry.
MSE’s Minister of State Desmond Tan said on May 26 at a visit to FairPrice’s Fresh Food Distribution Centre that there is adequate supply of chicken in Singapore and explained why there’s no need to panic buy.
It is because the supermarket chain has a stockpile of frozen chicken that can last for about four months, with another two months of supply on the way.
“We’re also working very hard with the industry and importers to source from other countries and sources of chicken to ensure we have continuation of supply. So I’d like to encourage every Singaporean to continue to purchase as per normal – there’s no need to surge your purchase of chicken as there are adequate supplies,” he told The Straits Times.
Don’t be a headless chicken ok?
Cover photo credit: MSE