Prohibited plants found in passenger's luggage
DALLAS - U.S. Customs and Border Protection agriculture specialists at the Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) seized live plants and seeds found inside a passenger’s luggage, Feb. 10.
CBP seized two live trees and one live potted tamarind plant as well as 42 packages of seeds, 20 pieces of palm tree plantings, chicory seeds, rice, millet, and fresh garlic were also among the prohibited items.
The prohibited items were discovered when the traveler arrived at DFW and was referred for a baggage exam. She listed an apple and chocolate on her declaration; however, agriculture canine “Gadget” indicated there could be much more than what the passenger had declared. An inspection of her luggage revealed a garden variety of prohibited items for planting and cooking.
“Agriculture is a critical component to CBP’s mission” said CBP Dallas Port Director Cleatus P. Hunt, Jr. “Our agriculture specialists are extremely vigilant in their work to detect harmful invasive plants and pests. Their work contributes to the safety of our nation’s agriculture industry.”
Travelers can check the general admissibility of fruits and vegetables by consulting the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) or the Fruits and Vegetables Import Requirements (FAVIR) database. CBP also provides information on the importation of plants and plant products.
The passenger was issued a penalty and the seized items were destroyed.
On a typical day in fiscal year 2016, CBP agriculture specialists discovered 404 pests at U.S. ports of entry and 4638 materials for quarantine.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.