SINGAPORE - Nine importers were fined $23,000 on Wednesday (Oct 23) for illegally importing fresh vegetables.
Two of these importers were fined an additional $600 each for illegally importing processed food for sale, the Singapore Food Agency (SFA) said in a statement on Wednesday.
From March to August, officers from SFA and the former Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority detected 2,848kg of undeclared and under-declared fresh vegetables.
They also found 340kg of undeclared processed food in the batches of vegetables imported by the nine importers.
The illegal batches were seized. The vegetables seized during the inspections include leaf mustard, Chinese celery and spring onion.
SFA said that illegally imported food products come from unknown sources and pose a food safety risk.
It added that food imports must meet the agency's requirements and food safety standards. Food can be imported only by licensed importers, and every batch must be declared and accompanied with a valid import permit.
Offenders who illegally import fresh fruits and vegetables can be fined up to $10,000, jailed for up to three years, or both.
If anyone illegally imports processed food, he can be fined up to $1,000. Repeat offenders can be fined up to $2,000.