Woman fined S$6,000 for smuggling quail eggs with embryos into Singapore

Woman fined S$6,000 for smuggling quail eggs with embryos into Singapore

A cardboard box containing illegally imported quail eggs
The illegally imported quail eggs were found concealed in a carton box at Changi Airport. (Photo: AVA)

SINGAPORE: A 29-year-old woman was fined S$6,000 on Monday (Oct 29) for illegally importing 330 embryonated quail eggs into Singapore, authorities said.

Tran Thi Bao Trang had brought a carton box filled with eggs containing developing quail embryos as checked baggage into Changi Airport on Oct 17, said the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) and the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) in a joint media release.

ICA officers found 330 eggs in the box, which was lined with plastic egg trays, and referred the case to AVA.

The authority found that the eggs contained developing quail embryos.

Tran contravened the Wholesome Meat and Fish Act by importing quail eggs from non-approved sources, said the news release.

The maximum penalty for importing food products from unapproved sources is S$50,000 and/or imprisonment of up to two years for a first conviction. 

In the case of a second or subsequent conviction, an offender could be fined up to S$100,000 and/or jailed for up to three years.

"Illegally imported food products are from unknown sources," said the authorities. "While Singapore is free from bird flu, the disease is endemic in the region. Illegally imported food products, which may not have undergone the necessary heat treatment to inactivate the virus, (are) a risk for public and animal health."

Source: CNA/nc(hm)