Assuring food security in Singapore, a small island state facing COVID-19

mall island states have features in common which make it difficult for them to assure food security through self-production, notably limited land, fresh water and labour. As these island states grow economically, diet diversification by an increasingly affluent population demands a balance between food imports and self-production. Singapore, a wealthy, small island state has consistently been ranked high in food security in international comparisons, but only under conditions when trade is uninhibited and countries do not reduce food exports. The COVID-19 pandemic has shown vulnerabilities in the country’s “Resilience” strategy to maintain food security through importing over 90% of its food needs from over 170 countries. Leading up to and during the pandemic, strategic policy initiatives were announced by the government and new measures were taken to increase the stability of imports, ramp up production from existing farms, increase self-production by 300% by 2030 through increasing the number of high technology urban vegetable and fish farms, and factory-cultured food, and reducing food waste. Singapore offers lessons for other small island states in ways to improve their food security.

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