Singapore: Policy Highlights and Opportunities
Each year Singapore generates more than 700,000 tons of food waste, and food loss and waste in Singapore has increased 20-30% over the past decade. At the same time, 1 in 10 households face food insecurity.
Atlas Research: Singapore
Singapore research was published in April 2021 and was made possible with the advice and support of our on-site partners, including The Food Bank Singapore.
Food Safety for Donations
In many countries, lack of knowledge or readily available guidance regarding safety procedures for donated food leads to food going to waste instead of being donated.
Singapore’s National Environment Agency issued Guidelines on Food Donation in 2016 which outline the responsibilities of donors and food recovery organizations recipients.
Tax Incentives and Barriers
In Singapore, while there are currently no tax incentives for the donation of food, there also are no tax barriers to donating food.
In order to offset the costs businesses may incur when donating food, the federal government should offer incentives.
Policy Opportunities and Recommendations
Liability Protection for Food Donations
Singapore does not currently offer any liability protection for food donors or food recovery organizations. Without such protections, food donors and intermediaries may refrain from food donation and recovery,
fearing potential liability should a final beneficiary claim they were harmed after consuming the donated food.
Singapore’s date labeling scheme fails to provide food donors and food recovery organizations with clear direction on the proper meaning and application of these labels.
The government should update the Food Regulations to establish a dual date labeling system that clearly distinguishes between safety-based and qualitybased date labels.
Government Grants & Incentives
National grant or incentive programs can be an important resource for food donation initiatives, especially as an alternative or supplement to tax incentives. Government recognition programs can also function as a significant incentive for food donors.
Yet there are currently no national grants or public funding mechanisms specifically designed to support food donation in Singapore.