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Thread: On the legality of importation

  1. #1

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    Since so many of our members are located in foreign countries, this issue needs to be addressed.

    So that you know, it is illegal to import plants and seed (yes, seeds too! ) into the U.S. without the appropriate phytosanitary documents in place. It is the responsibility of the importing party here in the U.S.A. to be sure this documentation is in effect before receiving plant material.

    I have seen open illegal solicitations on the Trade Forum, and feel I must caution members that illegal import carries some very hefty fines in the multi-thousands of dollars.

    Needless to say, any such barters should take place *privately*, via Personal Messaging, not on a public forum where they may attract unwanted attention!

    Sure, the Customs folk can't open every envelope, but it would not be good if a random check found illegal (read smuggeled) material en route to you.

    It doesn't matter if you solicited the trade or not. I know of one friend's nightmare experience where he was sent an unsolicited plant at the wrong time. His fine would have bought him a vacation in that same country.

    Just a word to the wise: be careful regarding the laws pertinant to your own countries regarding importation of plant material, and if you MUST do an illegal exchange, do so very quietly and not on a public forum!

    PFT does not support or encourage illegal exchanges of this nature. I am sure you understand that we need to clearly state this.

    Good growing, all!



    "Grow More, Share More"

  2. #2
    VFT and Drosera lover vft guy in SJ's Avatar
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    Wow seed too? I dont know what the international customs is like, but I do know that the state of California does not even allow you to bring an apple in from out of state. There is a checkpoint at the state line where every vehicle is stopped and drivers are asked for if they are carrying any fruits or vegitables.
    Thanks for the info
    Steve
    There are only 2 infinite things... the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not too sure about the universe.

  3. #3

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    I read somewhere its the same with animals too. Like if you wanted to get a fish from Canada there are lots of paperwork to go through.

  4. #4

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    Thanks Tamlin, that's good to know. Hopefully, that will keep me from making a costly mistake in the future!

    SF

  5. #5

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    No more donations to the ICPS seedbank from me then, I guess... [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/sad.gif[/img]

    I have found no problems in the past in sending seed to the USA, Canada, Israel and Australia, and I've always declared the species in full on a green customs label [ e.g. "Drosera rotundifolia" - "D.rotundifolia" is not sufficient], but I think that the USA is becoming much stricter now I guess with this.

    Thanks for the warning though...
    Kind regards,

    Adam.
    Wales, UK [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif[/img]
    I'm mainly interested in Drosera, Dionaea & Aldrovanda, Hardy Orchids (esp Dactylorhiza), Arums and Ericas (Heaths/Heathers - European + S.African)

  6. #6

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    I find the legality of importing/exporting CP seed into/out of the USA a grey area. I've seen the issue come up in posts on PFT before, and have visited various USDA and Customs web sites (including APHIS) seeking clarification. Rather than finding the information I seeked, I've just got dizzy!

    As far as I know the ICPS are still accepting seeds from non-US members and continuing to send seed out to them. If anyone knows of an official US web site which clearly states your government's position, I would like a link.

    Vic
    They say that money talks, but all it ever says to me is goodbye.

  7. #7

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    G'Day everyone,

    I can't vouch for the US import laws, but I am an expert on the Australian import restrictions. I work for the Australian Quarantine Inspection Service (AQIS)- similar to your USDA- in one of the International Mail Centres. One of my responsibilities is to inspect seed and plants arriving from overseas.

    To import plants into Australia you need import permits and phytosanitary certificates followed by a very costly post-entry growth period at a quarantine nursery for 4 months.

    Seed on the other hand can readily be imported as long as it is clean (ie- free from contamination in the from of plant parts, other seed, insects etc.) and is labelled clearly with a botanical name. The only exceptions are Genlisea sp., various aquatic Utricularia sp. and Ibicella lutea. These species are deemed to have the potential to become environmental weeds.

    This doesn't relate to the US, but I thought I'd provide some pertinent info to those who may need to send seed over here in the future.

    Regards,

    Sean.

  8. #8

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    G'Day again,

    Just adding to my previous message, I should also say that every item of international mail that enters Australia is x-rayed. You would probably be surprised how easy it is to detect most items of plant material on these x-rays.

    So, if you do plan on sending live plants to Australia- BEWARE!. There is a very high chance that they will be intercepted.

    Send as many seeds as you like though! [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif[/img]

    Cheers,

    Sean.

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