Singapore - Country Commercial Guide

This is a best prospect industry sector for this country. Includes a market overview and trade data.

Last published date: 2022-08-11


As a highly urbanized country with little local agricultural production, Singapore is almost entirely dependent upon imports for its food requirements.  Singapore’s food laws are therefore focused on ensuring consistent foreign supply of safe food and agricultural products.  While trade contacts report Singapore can be very strict on sanitary and phytosanitary issues, the country maintains a liberal and open trade system.  Singapore does not impose quotas and tariffs on imported food and agricultural products (except tobacco and alcoholic beverages).  Singapore’s total agricultural product imports in 2021 reached $ 17.2 billion USD, roughly nine percent of which was sourced from the United States (source: Trade Data Monitor).  The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the importance of a robust supply chain, and by extension, food security.  Even before the pandemic, as part of the “30 by 30” vision, the Singaporean government (in 2019) set the target of producing 30 percent of the country’s nutritional needs locally by 2030.

Singapore is also a leader in “novel foods,” including alternative proteins that do not have a history of being consumed as food.  Examples include “plant-based” and “cultured” (lab-grown) meat.  In fact, Singapore gave the world’s first regulatory approval to sell lab-grown meat commercially in 2020.  Singapore requires companies to seek pre-market approval for novel foods by submitting safety assessments on the product to cover risks such as toxicity, allergenicity, safety of its production methods, and dietary exposure arising from consumption.   A copy of the April 2022 safety assessment document is available in pdf.             

Table: Agriculture Market Size, million USD





2022 estimated

Total Local Production









Total Exports





Total Imports





Imports from the US





Total Market Size





Exchange Rates





Units: $ millions
Source: Trade Data Monitor, Singapore Food Agency

Leading Sub-Sectors

Table: Major Supply Sources by Product Category

Product Category (2021)

Major Supply Sources (2021)

Foreign Supplier Situation

Local Supplier Situation

Beef and Beef Products

Net Imports:

$341 million

1.    Brazil: 36%

2.    Australia: 30%

3.    United States: 12%

4.    Japan:  8%

Australia & New Zealand are traditional suppliers.

Brazil competes in the frozen beef segment.

Singapore does not produce beef.

Pork and Pork Products

Net Imports:

$368 million

  1. Brazil: 39%
  2. Australia: 16%
  3. Germany: 10%
  4. Spain: 9%
  5. Netherlands: 6%
  6. China: 6%
  7. United States: 4%

Brazil dominates the frozen segment.

Australian pork dominates the fresh/chilled market due to closed proximity.

U.S. processed pork is growing in popularity.

Live pigs from Indonesia are imported and slaughtered.  Most of the locally slaughtered meat is sold at wet/traditional markets and supermarkets. 

Poultry Meat and Products

Net Imports:

$398 million

1.    Brazil:  50%

2.    Thailand: 28%

3.    United States: 6%

4.    Malaysia:  5%

Brazilian poultry is currently one of the most   price competitive in the Singaporean market.

Malaysian live chickens are imported and processed in-country. 

Malaysia announced a moratorium on poultry exports on May 23, 2022, including 3.6 million birds a month – mostly to Singapore.  The ban will continue until prices and local supplies stabilize.  


Dairy Products

Net Imports:

1.2 billion

1.    New Zealand: 28%

2.    Australia: 13%

3.    United States: 9%

4.    Thailand: 7%

5.    France: 6%

New Zealand and Australia are traditional suppliers of dairy products.   There has been a greater demand for health and wellness products and beverages in recent years, even before the pandemic.

Local dairy companies are strong competitors and have brand/name familiarity with the domestic consumers.  Their products are generally cheaper. 

Fresh Fruit

Net Imports:

$569 million

1.    China: 14%

2.    Malaysia: 14%

3.    United States: 12%

4.    Australia: 12%

Top U.S. fresh fruits in the Singapore market include grapes, oranges, strawberries, and apples. 

Singapore produces very little fresh fruit. 

Processed Fruit

Net Imports:

$149 million

1.    China: 20%

2.    Indonesia: 15%

3.    Malaysia: 11%

4.    United States: 11%

U.S. processed fruits are very popular; some are repacked and sold as private local brands. 

Singapore is not a significant producer of processed fruit.

Tree Nuts

Net Imports:

$ 185 million

1.    Indonesia: 29%

2.    Malaysia: 20 %

3.    United States: 11%

4.    Thailand: 8%

Along with cashews from neighboring countries, U.S. nuts are very popular.  Some U.S. nuts are repacked and sold under local brands. 

Singapore is not a major producer of edible nuts. 

Wine and Beer

Net Imports:

$996 million

1.    France:  58%

2.    Australia: 15%

3.    Italy: 3%

4.    Japan: 3%

5.    United States: 3%

France dominates the premium wine market.  U.S. wines are growing in popularity. 

Singapore does not produce wine.

Asia Pacific Breweries (APB), Singapore’s largest beer manufacturer, dominates the beer market.

Data Sources: Trade Data Monitor


The pandemic has brought a wave of change to many sectors, including the food and beverage sector.  Though concerns remain regarding dampened purchasing power and possible disruptions to supply chains, there are also emerging opportunities.   The health and wellness products have grown from strength to strength as more consumers are seeking healthier food products as a result of the COVID-19 situation.  The pandemic has also significantly increased the focus on foods with functional nutrients.

Dairy Products

Dairy products are well-positioned to expand based on the demand for functional and healthy food. For example, yogurt and cheese containing probiotics and milk containing omega-3 fatty acids are in the forefront for the development of functional foods.  There was an 18 percent increase in imports of U.S. dairy products from $ 89 million in 2020 to $105 million* in 2021.  Preceded by the top two suppliers of New Zealand and Australia, the United States was the third largest exporter of dairy products to Singapore in 2021.  Local consumer demand for various dairy products has grown in recent years.

Fresh Fruit

The United States continued to perform well in the Singaporean fresh fruit market in 2021, as the number three supplier preceded by China and Malaysia.  Imports of U.S. fresh fruit reached $70 million last year.  Singaporean traders and retailers report that the reliable supply of high-quality products along with brand recognition are driving the strong demand for U.S. fresh fruit in the market.  The top four most popular U.S. fresh fruit in Singapore in 2021 were grapes, strawberries, oranges, and apples. 

Processed Fruit 

The United States is an important player in the processed fruit sector.  Imports of U.S. processed fruit reached $15 million in 2021.  The U.S. was the fourth largest exporter of processed fruit in 2021, preceded by China, Indonesia and Malaysia. 

Processed Vegetables

U.S. exports of processed vegetables were lower in 2021, at $61 million compared with $66 million in 2020.  However, the United States has continued to perform well in this category as the number two supplier after China in recent years.  In addition to affordability and convenience, health consciousness amongst consumers plays a role in the relatively stable demand for this product. 


U.S. beef exports to Singapore have been increasing steadily since 2016, following the agreement between the United States and Singapore in 2015, restoring a wider market access for U.S. beef and beef products in the country.  In fact, U.S. beef exports increased significantly from $19.6 million in 2016 to $41 million in 2021.   There was a 31% increase in imports of U.S. beef from $31 million in 2020 to $41 million in 2021. The United States has been the third largest supplier after Brazil and Australia since 2017.  However, strict restrictions are still in place, and they have inhibited the trade of meat/meat products in Singapore. 

*Source: Trade Data Monitor 


Singapore Food Agency

Animal & Veterinary Service

Singapore Manufacturing Federation

Singapore Business Federation

Singapore Fruits and Vegetable Importers and Exporters Association

Singapore Chefs Association

Restaurants Association of Singapore

Singapore Hotel Association

U.S. Department of Agriculture

U.S. Dairy Export Council

U.S. Grains Council

U.S. Meat Export Federation

USA Poultry and Egg Export Council

Raisin Administrative Committee, Food Export-Midwest, Food Export-Northeast, Western United States Agricultural Trade Association

U.S. Soybean Export Council

U.S. Wheat Associates


U.S. Department of Agriculture, Singapore Contact 

AgSingapore General Office Mailbox