2 'bak kwa' smugglers foiled at Woodlands Checkpoint: ICA

Nicholas Yong
Assistant News Editor
ICA officers at Woodlands Checkpoint separately caught two travellers attempting to smuggle bak kwa (barbecued meat), hidden in packets of durian-flavoured biscuits. (PHOTO: ICA / Facebook)

In separate cases, two Singaporeans were busted at the Woodlands Checkpoint on Saturday (12 January) for attempting to smuggle “bak kwa” (barbecued meat) into the country from Malaysia.

Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) officers stationed at the arrival bus hall found the meat items hidden inside packets of durian-flavoured biscuits, said the ICA in a Facebook post on Thursday.

“Officers noticed packets of layered stacks resembling ‘bak kwa’ in the scanned images of the 39-year-old female and 29-year-old male Singaporean’s hand-carried bags. Upon opening the packets of biscuits, slices of ‘bak kwa’ were found,” said the post.

Malaysian meat products not allowed into Singapore

The cases have been referred to the Agri-Food & Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA) for further investigation.

Food products brought into Singapore must meet AVA’s guidelines and must be from approved sources. Travellers are not allowed to bring meat and meat products from Malaysia into Singapore.

“Bak kwa” across the Causeway is significantly cheaper than in Singapore.

For example, a 1kg pack of freshly barbecued pork “bak kwa” from popular local brand Bee Cheng Hiang will set you back about $56. By comparison, the same amount of “bak kwa” costs 150 ringgit (S$49) in Malaysia.

Last February, two motorists were caught at Woodlands Checkpoint for the same offence, just ahead of the Chinese New Year holidays.

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