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U.S. Customs and Border Protection Seizes Prohibited Yak Meat, Dung Pods, and Seeds at JFK

Release Date: 
April 24, 2017

WASHINGTON - U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced the recent seizure and destruction of a shipment of over 132 kilograms of prohibited yak meat, dung pods, and seeds for propagation imported from Nepal at New York’s John F. Kennedy (JFK) International Airport. The prohibited items were manifested as sweaters, shawls, pants, and other items of clothing.

Yak meat seizure at JFK
Yak meat seizure at JFK

Yak meat is prohibited from being imported into the United States under 9 CFR 94, which prohibits ruminant products from countries affected by rinderpest or foot-and-mouth disease, such as Nepal. Certain propagative seeds are also prohibited from being import into the United States under 7 CFR 319.37, due to possible plant disease contamination. Foot and Mouth disease is a worldwide concern that can spread quickly and cause significant economic damage.

The shipment was initially identified by the Commercial Targeting and Analysis Center (CTAC) based on an e-Allegation from the public. The CTAC is a U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility designed to streamline and enhance federal efforts to address import safety issues. The CTAC combines the resources and manpower of CBP and other government agencies to protect the American public from harm caused by unsafe imported products by improving communication and information-sharing and reducing redundant inspection activities.

This seizure demonstrates exceptional interagency collaboration between CBP and the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) in targeting and identifying high-risk shipments for possible import safety violations, including dangerous agricultural commodities such as those found at JFK.

For additional information on CTAC and import safety, please visit

Last modified: 
February 3, 2021