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HPAI Restrictions for Avian Commodities Originating From and Transiting Through the Province of Ontario, Canada

Release Date: 
April 11, 2015

INTERNATIONAL FALLS, Minn. — The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) Veterinary Services (VS) advised U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Agriculture Programs and Trade Liaison that effective immediately and until further notice, APHIS VS is placing temporary prohibitions on the importation of poultry, commercial birds, other types of birds (research and performing), ratites, all avian hatching eggs, unprocessed avian products and by-products, and certain fresh poultry products from the province of Ontario, Canada.  Any of these commodities originating from or transiting through the province of Ontario are prohibited entry to the United States due to the diagnosis of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) in commercial poultry.  These restrictions may be updated as additional epidemiological information is obtained.

Also, effective immediately, Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is not certifying for export any live poultry, day-old chicks or hatching eggs, unprocessed avian products or by-products that originated within Ontario, Canada.

In 2007, a HPAI agreement was established between USDA and CFIA in the event that either country experiences an outbreak of HPAI.  Upon confirmation of HPAI in domestic poultry, each country agrees to establish an immediate quarantine zone and ban the export of birds and poultry as well as unprocessed bird and poultry products from the quarantine zone.

Unprocessed avian meat, products and by-products originating from or transiting through the province of Ontario are not permitted to enter the United States unless accompanied by a USDA APHIS VS import permit.  This also includes composted manure, hunter-harvested meat and meat in passenger baggage, whether shipped to the United States or accompanying returning hunters.  Exceptions are unfinished trophies that are consigned to USDA APHIS VS-approved establishments; in that case, VS import permits are no longer required.

Processed avian meat, products and by-products originating from or transiting through the province of Ontario and imported as cargo, must be accompanied by an APHIS VS import permit and/or Canadian government (CFIA) certification.

Processed avian meat, products and by-products for personal use originating from or transiting through the province of Ontario, Canada and entering in passenger baggage must also be accompanied by a APHIS VS import permit and/or CFIA certification confirming the products/by-products were treated according to APHIS requirements if they do not meet certain conditions.  The conditions include: a thoroughly-cooked appearance and shelf stable as a result of APHIS-approved packaging and cooking (i.e., packaged in hermetically sealed containers and cooked by a commercial method after such packing to produce articles that are shelf stable without refrigeration).

Canadian pet birds (including returning birds of U.S. origin) originating from Ontario can enter the United States from Canada through a U.S. port of entry only with a valid APHIS-issued import permit and port inspection.  In addition to an APHIS import permit, pet birds originating from or transiting through Ontario will also be required to have a CFIA-endorsed health certificate and must undergo 30-day quarantine.

Columbiform species (e.g., pigeons and doves) may be imported from Ontario with a valid APHIS VS-issued import permit, a U.S. port inspection by APHIS VS-designated personnel and a CFIA-endorsed health certificate.  The health certificate has specific requirements that can be found on the Live Poultry Import web page for the USDA APHIS here.  A 30-day quarantine is also required.  For questions regarding the importation of live birds, please contact the VS National Import Export Services – Live Animals staff at (301) 851-3300.

For any other questions, please contact a local Plant Protection and Quarantine (PPQ), Agriculture Quarantine Inspection (AQI), Veterinary Medical Officer or PPQ QPAS Veterinary Regulatory Support headquarters staff in Riverdale, Maryland at (301) 851-2312.

Additional information on restrictions due to avian influenza can be found on the APHIS website here.

Travelers intending to bring food products into the United States from Canada are encouraged to learn which products are allowed and which are prohibited before they travel.  Please visit the CBP’s website travel section here.

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017