You don’t have to do a whole lot of legislative history research to realize that there are legal statutes governing just about everything — even food. Here are a few of the craziest cuisine laws that have ever graced the pages of law books.
No Ketchup For Your Freedom Fries.
In October of 2011, France drafted a legal statute banning the use of ketchup in its schools, because authorities saw the American condiment as a threat to French culture. According to Christophe Herbert, the man behind the legal statute and the National Association of Directors of Collective Restaurants’ chairman, “We have to ensure that children become familiar with French recipes so that they can hand them down to the following generation.”
No Spitting Gum in Singapore.
Believe it or not, chewing gum on Singapore’s Mass Rapid Transit is an offense punishable by a fine. Even weirder, the rule comes as the result of a watered down version of a previous legal statute that had banned gum in Singapore for over 20 years. In 2004, the law changed and allowed doctors to prescribe citizens gum.
No Watermelon in Rio Claro.
If you can’t go a hot summer without tasting the refreshing flavor of watermelon, then you’d best not plan a vacation to Rio Claro, Brazil, where there’s a legal statute banning the delectable, summertime treat.
No Beer For Moose.
It’s more than likely that no one in their right mind would give a moose beer, but in Alaska, they had to make absolutely sure that no one would ever do that. The Last Frontier put into written law a legal statute that made giving a moose beer illegal. Sorry, Bullwinkle. The bar is closed.
Now it’s your turn. Have you ever encountered a weird, food law that seemed devoid of any legislative intent when you were doing your own law research? If so, share the whack-o legal statute in the comments.