Out of the Blue

A List of Foods That Have Been Banned

By FDL on

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A List of Foods That Have Been Banned
Photo Xlibber / Flickr

As many of you jet off on holiday around the world, we bring you a list of foods that have been banned in some countries and the reasons behind the ban, from public health to religion and culture.

1) Chewing gum in Singapore

Chewing gum was originally banned in Singapore in 1992. Since 2004 dentists and pharmacies have been able to sell theraputic gum. However, spit gum out in the street and you will find yourself landed with a hefty fine.

Photo: Korny Brot/Flickr

2) Haggis in the USA

Considered as a traditional delicacy in Scotland, haggis is actually banned in America due to a law against sheep lungs in food products. Unsurprisingly, the Scottish government is keen to see the 40-year veto overturned and has invited a delegation of US officials to the country in an effort to resume imports.

3) Beef in Maharashatra, India

The Maharashtra beef ban is the toughest so far in India - along with cows, it also forbids the killing of bulls and bullocks and even possessing beef, which is considered as contraband. Unhappy beef traders in Maharashtra are checking if they can challenge the ban - they say the move will render tens of thousands jobless. 

Photo: McKay Savage/Flickr

4) Ketchup in France

In October 2011 tomato ketchup was banned in schools in France after French authorities deemed ketchup was a  cultural threat to the future of french cuisine and the capacity of children to learn french cooking.

Photo: Steven Depolo/Flickr

5) Samosas in Somalia

 In 2011 samosas were banned in Somalia for religious reasons as the three sides of the samosa might remind people of the Christian Holy Trinity.

Photo: Kalvan Kanuri

6) Farm raised salmon in Australia and NZ

Australia and New Zealand have banned farm-raised salmon because most of them are bred with lots of antibiotics. 

7) Absinthe - in USA, NZ and Australia

Traditional Absinthe was banned for many years in the US and Europe because it contains large concentrations of wormwood, a plant containing the chemical thujone, which can induce hallucinations and affect mental health. The ban was lifted in the 1990s in Europe but in its rawest form, Absinthe remains technically illegal in the States as a food product controlled by the US Food and Drug Administration.

8) Bacon in Saudi Arabia

Since Saudi Arabia operates under Islamic law, all food entering the country must be “halal”. It is a country that considers all its citizens to be Muslim and any non-Muslim expats have to abide by its strict rules as well. Furthermore, because Saudi Arabia contains the two holy mosques, it considers having any pork inside the country desecration. 


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