I just discovered this article when I was trying to see if there was a reason given for Nigeria banning the import of mineral bottled water (as in the UK we drink this stuff freely yet in Nigeria it's a crime to even bring it with you).How strange is that?
Now as much as I love talking about my travelling adventures,I must say be vigilant about what you bring with you when travelling to other countries,not just to avoid embarassment on arrival but arrests,fines or worse (of course don't get involved in drugs,it's just not worth it full stop)
I'll provide a brief analysis/opinions of what I think is behind some of the strange laws.
1.Marmite (and Australia's equivalent to marmite,Vegemite) is banned in Denmark.
I think it goes down to the fact that the Danes seem to have this idea that anything fortified with vitamins or somehow 'enhanced with vitamins' is a problem. Well I can't really understand the basis of this law either so I'll just say this,if you're from the UK or Australia and you really love your Marmite/Vegemite,you can either leave it behind or find another country to visit without such strange laws.
2.Chewing gum (Singapore)
If you plan on travelling to Singapore,ditch the chewing gum (It's a lot like school in a way but instead the whole country feels a lot like my primary/high school due to their attitudes towards chewing gum) full stop as you can get in to trouble if you are caught with possessing it or chewing it full stop.While I think it's admirable to have such a clean and litter free country Singapore,please don't be so draconian about it.
3.Nigeria (bans a lot of commonly used stuff that's ok in most countries like mosquito nets,mineral bottled water and jewellery)
Nigera's a complete mystery to me in terms of why it bans such innocuous things as mosquito nets,mineral bottled water (most of the water there isn't safe I hear for most travellers from outside the country) and jewellery.I guess some countries earn a reputation for being a hell hole when they do things like this.I can understand jewellery being banned (due to conflicts for minerals/precious metals) but still there's no need to ban mosquito nets when the country has a huge problem with malaria (http://www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk/destinations/africa/nigeria/nigeria-malaria-map.aspx). Clearly their lawmakers need to wake up on issues like this.
4.New clothes (not banned but charged import duty in Malaysia)
If you want to get around this strange law,just wear your clothes at least once (as they charge new clothes that you carry on you duties fees.)
5.China (bans Aubergines and Red peppers yet they let you bring guns and ammunition into the country)
While I understand that banning the import of meat,eggs,fish and plants can prevent disease there are other things than can cause harm to people/communities such as guns,yet they're perfectly legal to bring into China for some reason.
6.Cordless phones in Indonesia
Yet another example of the sheer mystery behind the laws for banning a seeminglt straightforward item but unlike the odd laws of Nigeria,these laws do make sense due to how cordless phones work on different frequencies (without getting too technical) which vary from country to country.
7.Kinder Surprise eggs (yeah they're actually banned in the USA)
Apparently the USA bans these eggs due to the so called 'non nutritive object' inside the shell (better known as a toy,USA) even though they hardly kill anyone like the numerous deaths caused by guns and knives yet you don't ban those USA and they are both far more dangerous to kids than a toy inside a Kinder egg.Honestly the lawmakers in the USA need to get a grip on reality.
8.Toasters in Cuba
Well ok I know Cuba gets a bad reputation due to lack of civil liberties,frequent shortages and crumbling infrastructure but at least this is one of the laws that makes sense as Toasters are applicances that require a lot of electricity to run that Cuba just doesn't have,so to avoid more blackouts,they're banned.Even though I can't imagine life with a nice buttery toast at breakfast,that's what you should expect if travelling to Cuba.