With a consumption of 388 eggs per capita, it is fair to say that Singaporeans love eggs, consuming one on average every day.
After all, it is a brunch staple, our traditional breakfast essential, and a crucial ingredient to so many of our favourite hawker food. Think about it, a plate of char kway teow or a bowl of mee rebus minus the egg is a travesty to the taste buds.
To ensure that Singaporeans can continue to enjoy a steady supply of eggs, the Government is always on the lookout to diversify our egg sources.
Most recently, the Singapore Food Agency (SFA) has approved Indonesia as a new source country to export hen shell eggs to Singapore!
According to the SFA, this new addition will bring the number of countries and regions accredited to export eggs to Singapore to 18, up from 12 in 2019.
Also sharing the news in a Facebook post, Minister for Sustainability and the Environment Ms Grace Fu noted that this is “another step forward in our efforts to diversify Singapore’s egg supply”.
Strengthening our food security
In recent years, Singaporeans have experienced first-hand, the precarity of the global food supply chain.
But while such uncertainties affect all countries, the fear is much greater for smaller nations like Singapore which import 90 per cent of its food supply.
In the case of eggs, all it took was an avian flu outbreak, rising costs of fuel and feed and lingering supply chain issues to create a perfect storm of factors fuelling a worldwide egg shortage.
However, having the foresight to plan ahead has been instrumental in cushioning Singapore from supply shocks and building our food resilience.
Following the adage of never putting all our eggs into one basket, the Government has sourced far and wide to ensure a stable and safe supply of eggs (and other food items) to Singapore.
Today, the eggs we consume come from countries as far as Poland as well as our closest neighbours, Malaysia and Brunei.
And in addition to our diversification strategy, Singapore is also working towards its 30 by 30 goal, counting on producing our own eggs to hedge against supply disruptions.
With a fourth egg farm due to open in 2024, local egg production will soon be able to meet half of our demand when fully operational.
Building Resilience as a Nation
So far, our Government has strived hard to ensure that Singapore remains relatively unaffected by the egg shortages plaguing other countries.
Nevertheless, the threat of disruption to our supply of eggs (or any other food item) remains on the horizon due to factors beyond our control.
In the face of such potential turmoil, it is all the more important for Singaporeans to show resilience by staying adaptive.
In short, be creative with ingredients in the kitchen, and stay open to alternatives such as liquid egg and egg powder if necessary. Perhaps by swapping one ingredient for another, one might end up with a new dish by accident.
And as Minister Fu shared, “I encourage Singaporeans to be mindful of potential disruptions; and to be flexible with food and ingredient choices and adaptable to new food sources.”
Photo Source: SFA/Grace Fu via Facebook