Koryo Trading fined $30,000 for illegally importing meat, seafood from South Korea

A food importer was fined $30,000 in court on Oct 8 for operating an unlicensed cold store and illegally importing assorted meat and seafood from Korea.

Officers from the Singapore Food Agency (SFA) conducted an inspection of Koryo Trading in February 2020 and found approximately 4,656kg of meat and seafood products, including meat dumplings, frozen beef and processed squid, in an unlicensed cold store.

Further investigations revealed the company had illegally imported the meat products from Korea.

Investigations also revealed that Koryo Trading had, on a separate occasion, illegally imported approximately 72kg of puffer fish and puffer fish products from Korea.

The illegal consignments were seized.

In Singapore, food imports must meet SFA’s requirements.

Food can only be imported by licensed importers, and every consignment must be declared and accompanied with a valid import permit.

Illegally imported food products are of unknown sources and pose a food safety risk.

"Meat and their products, can only be imported from accredited sources in approved countries that comply with our food safety standards and requirements," SFA said.

Offenders who illegally import meat and seafood products face a maximum fine of $50,000 and/or up to two years' jail.

Illegal storage of meat and seafood at unlicensed facilities pose a food safety risk.

Under the Sale of Food Act and the Wholesome Meat and Fish Act, cold stores for meat and seafood products can only be operated with a valid licence.

These licensed premises are also routinely inspected by SFA.

Offenders who store meat and seafood items in unlicensed premises can be fined up to $10,000, or to jailed up to 12 months, or both