Long queues formed at wet markets following Jurong Fishery Port's closure
SINGAPORE – The closure of Jurong Fishery Port has affected fish suppliers and market stalls, and also caused a bit of anxiety among shoppers, who were seen snapping up fish in wet markets on Saturday (July 17).
Fish suppliers took to social media to announce that they would not be taking in any new orders, while market stalls selling fish sold out early for the day.
A teacher in her 40s, who only wanted to be known as Catherine, was among the early birds who managed to get some fish before the stalls closed.
“I was a little concerned when I heard about the situation. Since I live near Clementi wet market, I’ll head down to the wet market to buy fish at least once a week, not only for myself but also my family. When I heard about the news, I plan to purchase a little more today, perhaps twice the usual amount I buy,” she said at the market.
The two-week closure of Jurong Fishery Port from Saturday to July 31 is meant to help break the chain of Covid-19 transmission and enable deep cleaning after a cluster emerged there.
The Ministry of Health on Friday declared a cluster at the port and Hong Lim Market and Food Centre, with a total of seven Covid-19 infections.
Jurong Fishery Port is among one of two ports that handles the fish supplies into Singapore. The other port is Senoko Fishery Port.
Both ports have sea landings for fishing vessels to unload their supplies. Jurong Fisher Port also handles supplies of fish that come via land and air.
Long queues had formed at fish and seafood stalls at Clementi wet market when The Straits Times visited around 11am.
Wet market stallholders fretted about the closure’s impact on their business, with some saying that they will also have to close for the period too since they get their supplies from only Jurong Fishery Port.
Mr Koh Lim Poh, 47, a sales assistant at a fish stall in Clementi wet market, said the stall usually closes around noon when the supplies are sold out, but put up the shutters at 9am on Saturday.
“A lot of people were queueing to buy fish, because my store will be closed for two weeks. I feel disappointed that this happened, but there’s no choice and I can’t help it,” he lamented.
Ms Linda Lim, 60, an assistant helper at another fish stall that will also be closed for two weeks, said: “Our supplies are all from the fishery port. Some of the prices of our fish increased today as well. For example, threadfin increased by two to three dollars.”
She added that she hopes assistance will be given to stalls affected.
Mr Darius Nah, 26, an owner at another fish stall said he solely relies on fish supplies from Jurong Fishery Port. He added that he had to increase the price of fish by two to three dollars per kilogram on Saturday morning.
“For the next two weeks, it’ll be just like having a holiday – there’ll be no fish to sell,” he said.
Some suppliers of fresh fish like Lian Huat Seafood have already announced that they will be closed for two weeks.
Meanwhile, frozen fish suppliers took the opportunity to reassure people that there will still be supplies of frozen fish. SG Food United, a website of local food manufacturers and suppliers, took to Facebook to advertise several frozen fish suppliers that people can get their fish from.
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