What to Read Next

Why ducks eggs are not sold in Singapore

Joanna Yeo
5 October 2012

Text by Joanna Yeo, co-reported by Sheere Ng, Image by Joanna Yeo @ Makansutra.

Why ducks eggs are not sold in Singapore
Why ducks eggs are not sold in Singapore

Duck eggs were once used to cook familiar local favourites such as char kuay teow, carrot cake and oyster omelette. Owner of Hill Street char kuay teow, Mr Ng Chang Siang who had previously used duck eggs in his recipe says his customers prefer it as it has a richer taste and gives it a more ‘nian’ (sticky) texture.

But as prices of duck eggs became more expensive and supply turned scarce, he like many of his peers, resorted to cheaper chicken eggs over the years.

The reason for this price difference, says Mr Ong Siew Pang, former Chairman of the Kheng Keow Coffee Merchants Restaurant & Bar-Owners Association, dates back to the eggs’ origin around the 60s. Mr Ong explains that in the past, most fresh duck eggs were imported from Vietnam. During the Vietnam War, there was a shortage of duck eggs which then led to a price hike. As a result, many hawkers that were originally using fresh duck eggs in their recipe substituted them with chicken eggs.

Another reason for its unavailability here is because no approval has been granted to any supplier for the import and sale of fresh duck eggs in Singapore, according to egg supplier Mr Tan Kian Soon of Go Market. Mr Tan says the sale of fresh duck eggs in Singapore had already ceased way before he entered the business around 13 years ago.

When asked why, the Àgri-Food & Veterinary Authority (AVA) replied that they “have not received any applications to export fresh duck eggs to Singapore”. AVA is the government body that regulates the import of food and has strict criteria for hygiene, and safety. All meat, meat products, eggs and egg products to be imported into Singapore have to come from sources approved by them.

Mr William Ho, owner of the Farmart Centre thinks that the reason why fresh duck eggs cannot be found in Singapore might be due to avian flu. He elaborates that duck farming requires both wet and dry lands for breeding. He thinks that this makes them more susceptible to water and air borne diseases and as well as avian flu. This makes it an uphill task for duck egg farms to get accredited.

“In open-duck farming, wild birds that may carry avian flu virus can come into contact with the farmed ducks. When this happens, the farm ducks will also contract the virus,” says Associate Professor Vincent Chow from the Department of Microbiology, National University of Singapore. There are two different kinds of duck farming: open duck farming (not enclosed) and closed system duck farming with proper biosecurity (enclosed, without contact with outside birds).

Prof Vincent adds that in general, ducks reared via the open-duck farming system are more susceptible to avian flu as compared to their close-farmed duck counterparts. Chicken egg farm is an example of closed system farming. However, he also says that once the ducks are infected with the influenza virus, they will fall very sick easily and eventually die. Hence, the chances of them producing the eventual diseased eggs are very low.

Yet there are no suppliers applying to be accredited with AVA as duck egg suppliers.

If you’ve had the pleasure (or pain) of eating cha kway teow, fried Hokkien mee or oyster omelet done with duck eggs, please tell us all about the experience. We’ll like to hear your views.

Ever Googled Someone? Try Deep Searching For More

Entering a Name and State on this site could reveal info you thought wasn't available. Have you searched yourself or someone you know yet?

What Has Been The 2016 Best Skin Tighteners ?

Women everywhere are saving thousands of dollars on plastic surgery by reducing the appearance of wrinkles from the comfort of their own home.

Military Mortgage Rates In 2016

Rates as Low as 2.75% (3.028% APR) 15 Year Fixed. Exclusive For Veteran & Military - Takes 1 Min!

Are You Missing a Laptop Key?

100% OEM Replacement Laptop Keyboard Keys, $4.95 a Key, Easy Install. Perfect Fit & Finish. Free Install Video. Buy Today!

Walden University - Ph.D. in Psychology

Earn your Ph.D. in Psychology and make a positive impact within your community, organization, and profession. Request free information!

Stop Paying Too Much For Your Prescriptions.

Drug prices vary wildly between pharmacies. GoodRx finds the lowest prices and discounts. Compare prices, print free coupons & save up to 80%.

Oil Price: Is a new replacement driving it down?

A stunning breakthrough in chemical engineering has unleashed a massive supply of fuel that could hand the United States 100% energy independence.

2016's Unbelievable New Crossovers

These models take quality to a whole new level. Search Top 3 SUV Deals Now!

Help Erase Credit Card Debt with a Personal Loan

Are you paying too much on your credit cards? Consider a Personal Loan to help consolidate your payments.

The Platinum Card®

Earn Premium Travel Rewards With Your American Express® Card. Apply!

Don't settle for less than Secret® Clear Gel!

Your busy lifestyle doesn't have room for body odor or white marks! With Secret® Clear Gel Deodorant, you get #ClearlyBetter results and new scents!

Switch and save!

Switch to Progressive and you could save an average of $548.

Insane Navy Seal Flashlight

The Military has recently released technology that is now available to the public. Get yours before they run out - Limited Supply!

Are Banks Are Worried Homeowners Will Do This?

Homeowners are surprised and furious. If you owe less than $625,000 on your home, you better read this.