The Dubai Municipality has warned the public against a fake product of a popular chocolate hazelnut spread packaged in a syringe with a needle.
Chocolate addicts, beware! Don’t get carried away by ads that lure you with chocolate shots. The Dubai Municipality has warned the public against a fake product of a popular chocolate hazelnut spread packaged in a syringe with a needle.
The warning from Director of the Food Control Department of the municipality Khalid Sherif Mohammed Al Awadhi came after promotional messages carrying the pictures of “choco-injections” of the Italian brand started being circulated through social networking sites and smartphones.
Without naming the company, the civic body said in a statement on Monday that it has found out that the labelled company had no relation with the product. However, the pictures supplied by the municipality clearly showed the brand name.
The medical needles may not be clean or sanitised and chocolate injections can turn dangerous to health. — Supplied photo
“The product is unlicensed and the needles are meant for medical purposes, hence people should not use it in any case,” Al Awadhi said.
He said the Ministry of Health had confirmed that the medical needles may not be clean or sanitised and might be used in hospitals to take blood or for injecting medicines. “Therefore, we strongly advise the public to purchase food products from authorised establishments only as they get approval for all food items apart from (subjecting them to) the periodical (checks) by the civic body,” said Al Awadhi.
In such cases, Al Awadhi said, the civic body works with the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Environment and Water to take necessary actions and confirm the compliance of the product with the legal requirements. Accordingly, Dubai has banned certain harmful sweets for kids that are hard to digest or encourage bad habits like smoking, he explained.
“The civic body is keen to take required action to protect the public interest and health, especially the health of the new generation, in line with the applicable rules and regulations of the Ministry of Health,” he added.
However, Asia Abdulwahab Alraeesi who heads Food Studies and Planning at the Food Control Department, said it was difficult to trace the original senders of the chocolate shot ads. “Hence, there should be more awareness,” she told Khaleej Times.
“It is obvious that they are trying to sell the chocolate spread manually filled in the syringes with needles. Anything could be suspected of such products. Plus, chocolate is not supposed to be used as a medicine.”
Alraeesi said the product was being marketed through BlackBerry messages and social networking sites. “People should not help them circulate the messages and promote such products further,” she said.