The Maldives Customs Service launched a special operation Tuesday night to seize sauce bottles containing white wine and pork on sale at a shop in Malé.
The operation was launched after photos of the Leggo brand Italian Chicken Scaloppini white sauce bottles at the Red Wave supermarket emerged on social media.
A label on the pasta sauce stated that it contains white wine and bacon.
It is unclear how the sauce bottles were imported and cleared through customs. The MCS media official was unavailable for comment at the time of publication.
MCS Senior Superintendent Ahmed Niyaz told Sun Online yesterday that 90 percent of the sauce bottles have since been seized.
Niyaz said only one shipment of the sauce bottles was imported, adding that efforts are underway to determine whether it is available outside of Malé.
The MCS has also sent out inspection teams to check if the sauce is available in shops.
Checking individual products is a difficult and cumbersome process, Niyaz said.
The sale of alcohol and pork is prohibited by law in inhabited islands as the consumption of alcohol and pork is forbidden in Islam. The constitution states that “no law contrary to any tenet of Islam shall be enacted in the Maldives.”
However, both liquor and bacon are imported to the Maldives in large quantities for sale in tourist resorts.
The MCS has also urged members of the public to call its toll free number 1416 if the sauce bottle is spotted in a shop.
MCS seizes sauce bottles displayed on racks of a shop, which also said to contain white wine in it. pic.twitter.com/jYfpHNGl8o
— Maldives Customs (@CustomsMv) May 24, 2016