S'pore No. 1 in world for food security: EIU index

People here eat with peace of mind. Maybe that's why they eat so much.

Belmont Lay| December 09, 04:40 PM

Singapore has been ranked top in the world for food security for a second year running, according to a report by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).

Singapore scored well in affordability, accessibility and quality, which are the three core pillars of the Global Food Security Index (GFSI) 2019.

Singapore scored 87.4 out of 100, and is the only country in Asia ranked in the top 10 of the index.

Ireland, United States, Switzerland, came in second, third and fourth respectively.

Finland and Norway are in joint fifth.

Only weakness

But the global survey of food systems by the EIU noted that the fourth pillar of the index, natural resources and resilience factors, pose a risk to Singapore's food security.

Singapore scored low due to its heavy dependency on food imports.

It is also weak in the areas of water-related risk factors.

Singapore is one of four countries most exposed to factors such as flood, temperature rise and drought.

External shocks

Lim Chuan Poh, Chairman, Singapore Food Agency, said Singapore is vulnerable to external shocks that impact global food supply as it imports most of its food.

Singapore has diversified its food import sources from 140 countries in 2004 to more than 180 countries last year, he said.

He added: “To make our diversified import strategy more robust, we intend to complement this with increased local production. We have set ourselves an ambitious ‘30 by 30’ goal to produce 30 percent of our nutritional needs by 2030.”

In its eighth year, the GFSI assesses 113 countries in providing for the dietary needs of their populations.

It takes into account a country’s ability to supply enough calories to its population, and how its food system is affected by factors ranging from political stability to climate threats.

Details of the survey were put out in a media release on Monday, Dec. 9.

Top photo via Unsplash