LABUAN, Jan 19 – Gala and Granny Smith apples are available on the duty-free island, but fret not! They are not those imported from California, USA as the agriculture and agro-based industry ministry has restricted their import into Malaysia. Labuan Health Department director Dr Ismail Ali said the department’s enforcement unit detected the two types of apples late December last year, but the fruits were imported from South Africa, Italy and France.
“We detected the apples, via the entry gate here but the apples are not from California,” he told Bernama here today. He advised consumers not to be unduly worried over the apples available in the island’s supermarkets or markets. “Nevertheless, consumers must remain vigilant, should they experience Listeriosis symptoms like high fever, severe headache, nausea and stiff neck,” he said.
The ministry restricted the entry of Gala and Granny Smith apples from the US into Malaysia, as the products are suspected to be tainted with the Listeriosis Monocytogenes bacteria. It is understood apples from California had resulted in three deaths and many were taken ill in the US and Canada.