At 2am when most of us are fast asleep, Jurong Fishery port gets alive and bustling. While we are preparing for the next working/schooling day ahead, others are getting ready to head out and grab the freshest of seafood at fishery ports.
As the root of the industry, fishery ports like these import fresh seafood for the mongers in Singapore before distributing them out to wet markets and restaurant suppliers. Here we explore Jurong Fishery Port, Singapore’s largest fishery port that comes alive in the wee hours in the morning.
P.S. As a precautionary measure, casual seafood buyers and non-trade visitors are not allowed to enter the fishery ports during the Covid-19 period to prevent mingling of large crowds at the facilities.
Located in far-flung Boon Lay right beside Jurong River is a world unknown to many—especially millennials and teenagers in our generation.
This is where most owners of stalls in wet markets and those responsible for supplying fresh seafood to restaurants head over to get their goods as they sell the freshest of seafood at the cheapest of prices.
As the fishery port only starts to get ready at around 11pm with all the seafood being laid out mostly after 12am, getting there by public transport is almost out of the question.
Prior to heading over, make a mental note to bring your NRIC or something else to verify your identity as you’d need to exchange it for a pass in order to enter the fishery port at the security area.
After 12 midnight is when you’d see large vehicles entering the area and customers, mostly of older age, dressed in rubber boots entering and ready to get their loots.
However, Jurong Fishery Port is the most bustling from 2am to 3am, as this is when most imports come in daily and fishmongers start selling their seafood.
Likewise, regular customers would know that this is the best timing to head over if they want to get the best of variety and quality. After all, the early bird catches the worm, right?
If you do not intend to purchase any seafood at wholesale prices and are simply heading over for the experience, we’d recommend that you go before 1am when the fishery port is slightly emptier—though you’d get to witness fishmongers in action nonetheless.
Any time after that is when most customers come in and vendors are most busy—this is also when things start to get messy so do be wary!
Jurong Fishery Port is home to dozens of vendors. Take a walk around and you’d find a variety of seafood so wide that ‘huge’ is an understatement.
Their aisles are narrow and slippery from melting ice that has been used to keep the seafood fresh. Along the sides of the pathway, you’d find individual vendors laying out their seafood and going about in preparation for the crowd that would be coming in at 2am.
There aren’t signboards stating what seafood those laid out on the floor are, nor the prices. We’re guessing that this is since most customers here are regulars and familiar with all sorts of seafood. As for the prices, we heard that customers would always bargain according to the quantity they are purchasing and the freshness of the seafood that particular day.
You’d find some of these vendors expertly dissecting the fish, cutting up into slices of regular size. One look and you can tell that these are the people who have been at it for decades and are no doubt the pioneers in the industry.
Jurong Fishery Port caters more to bulk purchases and that is why most customers are usually the stall owners at wet markets or other suppliers in the industry.
Should you wish to make a smaller purchase, try out Senoko Fishery Port at Sembawang—a slightly smaller fishery port compared to the one at Jurong but selling fresh seafood at low prices too.
We had an eye-opening experience at Jurong Fishery Port and we’d highly recommend going to explore such wholesale markets in Singapore at least once in your life.
For more information, visit https://www.sfa.gov.sg/wholesale-markets/fisheries.
Fishery Port Road
Tel: +65 6265 1680
Nearest Station: Boon Lay