Makansutra founder reveals “shocking” costs for hawkers at new Government-run food centres

While the Government is promoting hawker culture and paints hawker food as a cheap source of good food, hawkers seem to be struggling with increasingly high costs.

Yesterday, renowned local food guru KF Seetoh shared, “I had the sad eye opening chance to glance at the contract agreements of some new hawkers which have been installed at our new Social Enterprise Hawker Centres (SEHC).” KF Seetoh is the founder of the long-running Makansutra food network which has produced heritage street food guides, international culinary tv shows and operated food markets over its 21-year history.

Last month, a woman successfully bid for a hawker stall at the Chomp Chomp Food Centre at Serangoon Gardens with a record monthly rental of $10,028.

The next highest bid was $3,504.68.

Another Chomp Chomp stallowner told reporters that he felt the bidder would not have been able to make profits with such high rent.

68-year-old Charlie Goh who runs Charlie Corner Health Fresh Juices told reporters: “Including operating costs, my monthly expenses amount to only $1,000.

Even so, it’s hard for me to make $3,000 each month, let alone $10,000.” For Ms Lim Ah Ber, the woman who made the $10,028 bid, she would have had to sell 3400 plates of $3 dishes a month, or 113 plates a day, just to break even if she charged $3 for the food she plans to sell.

This is not including cleaner, maintenance and dishwashing fees, either.

Ms Lim may have realised this since she had a change of heart and terminated the tenancy agreement the same day she signed it.

Woodlands hawkers forced out of Food Centre grapple with 100% rental hike in replacement food court The last of Singapore’s old-style Kopitiams to make way for development next year

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