Singapore ranks No. 1 in the world for food security: EIU index

File photo: Yahoo News Singapore
File photo: Yahoo News Singapore

SINGAPORE — Singapore has retained its top position in the world in food security for a second consecutive year, according to a report by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).

The global survey of food systems shows Singapore scores well in the three core pillars of the Global Food Security Index (GFSI) 2019: affordability, accessibility and quality. But the EIU noted in a media release on Monday (9 December) that natural resources and resilience factors - the fourth pillar of the index - pose a risk to its food security.

Singapore is the only country in Asia ranked in the top 10 of the index. With a score of 87.4 out of 100, the city-state was ahead of second-ranked Ireland, the US (third), Switzerland (fourth) and Finland and Norway in joint fifth.

But Singapore scores low for its heavy dependency on food imports. It is also weak in the areas of water-related risk factors, and is found to be one of four countries most exposed to factors such as flood, temperature rise and drought.

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

Singapore has diversified its food import sources from 140 countries in 2004 to more than 180 countries last year, Lim said. “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% of our nutritional needs by 2030,” he added.

In its eighth year, the GFSI assesses 113 countries in providing for the dietary needs of their populations. It takes into account not only a country’s ability to supply enough calories to its population, but also how its food system is affected by factors ranging from political stability to climate threats.

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