The UAE's Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MoCCAE) said on Monday that it is removing Australian rock melons from UAE markets following deaths from contaminated products.
The decision has been taken in line with the Ministerial Decree No. 433 of 2017 on Rapid Alert System for Food.
Majd Al Herbawi, food safety director at the MoCCAE, said: "The decision comes in the wake of what has been recently circulated in international newspapers regarding the listeria contaminated Australian rock melons, which resulted in three casualties so far. The ministry has been closely following the updates of the outbreak.
"The decision underscores the ministry’s commitment to protecting food safety and safeguarding consumers from adulterated and misbranded foods, in coordination with relevant authorities in the UAE," she said in comments published by state news agency WAM.
Al Herbawi added that the ministry, along with Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority, and municipal authorities in Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Qainwain, Ras al-Khaimah and Fujairah, is monitoring the markets to ensure the implementation of the decision.
"MoCCAE has also directed food safety regulatory authorities at UAE entry points to deny the entry of rock melon shipments coming from Australia, unless they are declared contamination free," she added.
The ministry has urged UAE consumers not to consume any Australian rock melons that are subject to the recall.
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