The government task force's efforts to raise awareness and bring in more affordable options of infant formula milk are paying off, with surveys showing increased consumer awareness and an overall fall in average prices.
Between May and November last year, the average price of formula milk in Singapore fell 4.8 per cent according to retail data from Nielsen. Prices of formula milk for infants aged below six months fell by 13 per cent, while those for infants aged from six to 12 months fell by 9 per cent.
Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry and National Development, Dr Koh Poh Koon, who heads the formula milk task force formed in May last year to tackle the issue of soaring prices here, gave this update to the media on the task force's efforts yesterday (8 Feb).
The decrease in average prices stemmed from an increase in consumer awareness and the availability of more affordable formula options, Dr Koh said.
He also explained that Nielsen's figures are drawn from sales at all major retailers in Singapore and reflect "what you see in terms of price difference".
Moving forward, food-labelling regulations will be amended to prohibit health and certain nutrition claims by formula milk manufacturers as well as texts and images that idealise the use of infant formula.
The Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority had previously said it was gathering public feedback on this proposal, which is aimed at curbing excessive marketing and encouraging greater price competition.
Advertising that a product contains iron and calcium, or that calcium helps to build strong bones, for example, will be disallowed under the new rules.
Source: “ Average prices of formula milk falling, survey shows” (The Straits Times, 9 February 2018)