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Singapore

Korean food importer Jin Global, firm director fined over unlicensed cold store

Korean food importer Jin Global, firm director fined over unlicensed cold store

Packaging with no labels (left) and detained dry expired food seized in the unlicensed cold store. (Photos: SFA)

SINGAPORE: A company that imports and distributes Korean food was on Wednesday (Dec 1) fined S$3,000 for operating an unlicensed cold store. 

Jin Global's director Song Sung Hyuk was also fined S$3,000 for "failing to exercise due diligence to prevent the offence from being committed", said the Singapore Food Agency (SFA) in a media release. 

On its website, Jin Global describes itself as "a leading Korean food importer/distributor" that serves Korean and local restaurants. 

SFA said that in December last year, its officers found that the company had stored about 5,490kg of frozen meat, seafood products and processed food products in an unlicensed cold store.

The products, which included meat dumplings, frozen octopus and processed fish, were seized by authorities.

"Illegal storage of meat and seafood at unlicensed facilities pose a food safety risk," said SFA. 

Those who keep meat or seafood products in unlicensed cold stores for the purpose of selling or supplying the goods can be fined up to S$50,000, jailed for up to two years, or both. 

Illegal consignments from Fresh Choice Avenue seized by SFA. (Photo: SFA)

COMPANY FINED FOR ILLEGAL IMPORT OF VEGETABLES

Another importer, Fresh Choice Avenue, was fined S$10,000 on Wednesday for illegally bringing in fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as processed food for sale.

SFA said that on Sep 2 last year, authorities detected around 349kg of undeclared and under-declared fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as 304kg of undeclared processed vegetables. 

The products were imported from Malaysia.

Fruits and vegetables can only be imported into Singapore by licensed importers, said SFA, adding that every consignment must be declared and accompanied by a valid import permit.

"Illegally imported vegetables are of unknown sources and can pose a food safety risk, for example, if unregulated or high level of pesticides are used," said the agency.  

"The long-term ingestion of excessive pesticide residues through the consumption of vegetables that have been subjected to pesticide abuse could lead to adverse health effects." 

If found guilty of illegally importing fresh fruits and vegetables, offenders face a fine of up to S$10,00, a jail term of up to three years, or both.  

Those convicted of illegally importing processed food face a fine of up to S$1,000. This could double to S$2,000 for repeat offenders.

Source: CNA/ad(gs)

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