The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is the latest country to announce it is banning Applebee’s from opening new restaurants in its territory.
The move follows a number of other countries banning the food giant, including Singapore and Malaysia.
The UAE also announced a ban on Applebee food, citing the food’s “poor health” and the “potentially hazardous effects” of antibiotics on the environment.
“We have been notified that Applebee is a food-related threat to our country and its environment,” Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Health Minister, told the state-run Anadolu Agency.
“The UAE is committed to promoting environmental health and safety in its food supply, which includes banning the use of antibiotics in food.”
Applebee, meanwhile, is fighting back.
“Applebee’s ban is absurd,” the company said in a statement.
“While we are very disappointed to see such a ban taking place, we have no choice but to fight back.”
Applebees first opened in the UAE in 2006.
The company has grown to become the world’s largest restaurant chain, serving more than 300 million meals a year.
The Applebee chain is now owned by U.S. restaurant chain Chick-fil-A, but has been in operation in the United Arab Emirate since at least 2001.
Applebee opened its first U.K. location in 2005, and in the U.A.E., its first UAE restaurant opened in 2009.