How to Start a Food & Beverage (F&B) Business in Singapore?

5 min read|Last Updated: December 4, 2023|

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One of the most common industries for investors and entrepreneurs venture into is the food and beverage (F&B) industry in Singapore. Although the F&B industry in Singapore has taken a hit in recent years because of the Covid-19 restrictions, you cannot take away the fact that Singaporeans love their food and eating.

If you have a unique and strong F&B business idea, it is worth a try to set up your own restaurant or food manufacturing company in Singapore. Let’s see how to go about starting your company!

How to Start a Food Manufacturing Company in Singapore

To kickstart your entrepreneurial journey in the food manufacturing sector, there are certain steps to be on your way to success.

Step 1: Decide on your location and layout

Choosing a cost-efficient and optimal location is the first step when deciding to start your food manufacturing company. The chosen location should be within the vicinity of your key operations to reduce time and effort when transporting the products.

Step 2: Incorporate your company

The process of registering your company in Singapore requires a keen understanding of the requirements. Business owners have to register with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA).

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Step 3: Register with the relevant regulatory authorities

As a food manufacturing company, there are additional authorities that you may need to register with:

  • Singapore Food Agency (SFA)
    Regulates local food processing and storage establishments and conducts site inspections on food processing premises.

  • Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA)
    All imports and exports must be approved by ICA – this includes materials for food processing.

Additional requirements may be needed based on your business functions.

Step 4: Hire staff and arrange logistical requirements

The next step is to get your manpower ready before operations start. If you plan to hire foreign professionals, you will need to secure an Employment Pass or working visa before they are allowed to enter Singapore.

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If you’re looking to employ locals to work in your company, you will need to prepare a contract as per the Singapore Employment Act and laws. The next step after hiring your employees is to pay them. Payroll in Singapore can be quite complicated, especially for new business owners and foreign business owners, thus outsourcing your payroll function can be a good idea.

Step 5: Ensure annual compliance and maintain regulatory requirements

After setting up and kickstarting your operations, you are required to maintain annual compliance with ACRA for financial records, and other regulatory certificates. To focus on your business, it is recommended that you leave these compliance works to a trusted corporate services company like Paul Hype Page.

How to Start a Restaurant in Singapore

Before you start your restaurant, it is important to note some of the key challenges that you may face. These include:

  • High levels of competition

  • High food costs

  • High labour costs

  • Reduced focus on market strategy
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There are also requirements that you should take note if you wish to set up a restaurant in Singapore.

  • Incorporate your restaurant as a private limited company
  • Identify their premises and pay rent if you do not own the land
  • Receive approval from landowner by submitting letter of intent which helps all parties involved engage in rental transactions
  • Layout plan and planning permission are required if a new building must be constructed
  • Ensure fire safety standards by applying for a Fire Certificate from the Singapore Civil Defense Force
  • Code of practice of environmental health license
  • Food Shop license

The process of incorporation and starting a restaurant is similar to that of starting a food manufacturing company.

What are some of the F&B Industry Licenses to know?

Business licenses for the F&B industry are important to ensure that there are an established set of standards to comply with, especially to maintain food safety. You may find the following F&B industry licenses below.

  • Food Shop License
    The license is mandatory to operate a restaurant and usually takes one month to be issued, but it could be longer if it has to be renovated according to the regulations set by the National Environment Agency (NEA). The license will only be issued after inspection of the restaurant premises.
  • Liquor License
    If your restaurant serves alcoholic beverages, you will need a Liquor License, which will be issued by The Liquor Licensing Board. There are 2 types of licenses:

    • Public house license
    • Beer house license

    These licenses are valid for 2 years.

  • Basic Food Hygiene Course
    To ensure the maintenance of the cleanliness in the F&B industry, a Basic Food Hygiene Course license is required. This serves as a form of food hygiene certification and this rating must be displayed by the owners. Employees are also required to attend these courses.

  • Halal License
    If you are looking to cater to the Muslim community in Singapore, a Halal license will be required. It is essential to get your Halal supply from the certified third-party suppliers only.

Incentives & Grants for Businesses in Singapore

As the Singapore government is pro-business, they have plenty of business grants available to tap on. These include the Enterprise Development Grant, Productivity Solutions Grant, and more. Check out the top business grants here.

One of the business grants that would help to scale your business is the Market Readiness Assistance (MRA) grant. The grant aims to internationalise your business by providing up to S$100,000 in support per new target market.


Come to our office or get in touch virtually for a consultation on your company incorporation and other corporate services.


Do all Singaporean companies require business licenses?2021-09-06T22:06:47+08:00

Many companies in Singapore require additional business licenses before they may begin business operations. However, this is not necessarily true of every company in Singapore. This is because the licenses required, if any, differ from industry to industry. You may find out more about business licenses in Singapore here.

Can foreigners open a restaurant or food manufacturing company in Singapore?2022-07-18T11:30:52+08:00

Yes, any foreigner can start a restaurant or food manufacturing company in Singapore. Find out how to incorporate a Singapore company as a foreigner here.

What is the total cost of opening a food business in Singapore?2021-09-06T22:09:25+08:00

There is no fixed amount of capital for starting a F&B company in Singapore. However, you should consider the following when it comes to budgeting.

  • Rents
  • Living cost of Singapore
  • Labor costs

The amount of capital that you require to start a food business in Singapore highly depends on the size of the business that you want to start. You will roughly need around SGD 60,000-SGD 600,000, or more, depending on the nature of your business.

What is the consumer taste in the 21st century? What kind of food products should I produce?2020-11-05T16:33:36+08:00

Today, consumers prefer healthy food and snacks. It is worth to invest in Healthy Confectionery & Snack Manufacturing. 

What food products are manufactured in Singapore?2020-11-05T16:32:29+08:00

The food products that are manufactured in Singapore are:

  • Khong guan biscuits
  • Tiger beer
  • Boncafé coffee
  • Tiger brand soya sauce
  • Amoy canning canned products

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