SINGAPORE —Local food manufacturer Whye Kee Foodstuff has been fined $17,700 for unlawfully discharging untreated waste water into public sewers repeatedly, said national water agency PUB on Thursday (8 October).
The company was previously fined $14,400 in May last year for doing the same thing.
The latest offences were discovered during PUB’s inspections at the company’s site at Tai Seng Avenue in September and October last year.
“During one of the inspections, the trade effluent sample was found to have exceeded, by more than 120 times, the allowable limits for Biochemical Oxygen Demand, Total Suspended Solids and Chemical Oxygen Demand; and more than eight times for Oil and Grease (non-hydrocarbon). These substances were from the food waste produced by the company’s food manufacturing operations,” said PUB in a press release.
The agency said excessive levels of these substances in sewage can impact used water treatment processes at its water reclamation plants and hence disrupt NEWater production.
“Investigations revealed that Whye Kee Foodstuff failed to put in place effective measures to prevent and remove excessive food waste generated from the food manufacturing processes from going into the sewers. In addition, the company did not pre-treat trade effluent to meet discharge limits as required under the Sewerage and Drainage (Trade Effluent) Regulations,” PUB said.
PUB has since revoked its approval for the company to discharge trade effluent into sewers from 4 May this year. The company now has to engage appropriate waste collectors to collect its effluent for off-site disposal.
For discharging trade effluent containing chemical substances exceeding allowable limits into the public sewer under the Sewerage and Drainage (Trade Effluent) Regulations, the company could have been fined between $5,000 and $15,000 for each of the four proceeded charges which it pleaded guilty to. It faced a total of 10 charges, but six were considered in sentencing as part of a plea bargain.
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