For customs regulations governing importation of plants and plant products, see 19 CFR part 12.
The entry into the United States of certain plants, plant products, and soil is prohibited or restricted through various orders, quarantines, and regulations promulgated by the Administrator of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) under the authority of the Plant Protection Act (7 U.S.C. 7701-7772). To assist in enforcing the aforementioned orders, quarantines, and regulations, the Plant Protection and Quarantine Programs of APHIS have made provisions with the U.S. Postal and Customs Services to ensure closer inspection of prohibited or restricted imported articles.
[66 FR 21059, Apr. 27, 2001]
Inspectors of the Plant Protection and Quarantine Programs and customs officers are stationed at the following locations:
Anchorage, Alaska, Arlington, Va., Atlanta, Ga., Baltimore, Md., Baton Rouge, La., Blaine, Wash., Boston, Mass., Brownsville, Tex., Buffalo, N.Y., Calexico, Calif., Chantilly, Va., Charleston, S.C., Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, V.I., Chicago, Ill., Christiansted, St. Croix, V.I., Cleveland, Ohio., Corpus Christi, Tex., Dallas, Tex., Del Rio, Tex., Detroit, Mich., Douglas, Ariz., Dover, Del., Duluth, Minn., Eagle Pass, Tex., El Paso, Tex., Galveston, Tex., Hidalgo, Tex., Hilo, Hawaii, Hoboken, N.J., Honolulu, Hawaii, Houston, Tex., Jacksonville, Fla., Jamaica, L.I., N.Y., Key West, Fla., Laredo, Tex., McGuire AFB, N.J., Memphis, Tenn., Miami, Fla., Milwaukee, Wis., Mobile, Ala., New Orleans, La., New York, N.Y., Newport News, Va., Nogales, Ariz., Norfolk, Va., Pensacola, Fla., Philadelphia, Pa., Port Arthur, Tex., Port Canaveral, Fla., Port Everglades, Fla., Portland, Oreg., Presidio, Tex., Progreso, Tex., Ramey AFB, P.R., Roma, Tex., Rouses Point, N.Y., St. Paul, Minn., San Antonio, Tex., San Diego, Calif., San Francisco, Calif., San Juan, P.R., San Luis, Ariz., San Pedro, Calif., San Ysidro, Calif., Savannah, Ga., Seattle, Wash., Tampa, Fla., Toledo, Ohio, Washington, DC, West Palm Beach, Fla., Wilmington, N.C.
All parcel post or other mail packages from foreign countries which, either from examination or external evidence, are found or are believed to contain plants or plant products, shall be dispatched for submission, or actually submitted, to the plant quarantine inspector at the most accessible location listed in § 351.2. The inspector shall pass upon the contents under the Plant Quarantine Act and Federal Plant Pest Act and with the cooperation of the customs and postal officers either
(a) Release the package from further plant quarantine examination and endorse his decision thereon; or
(b) Divert it to the Plant Quarantine Station at Washington, DC, Brownsville, Tex., Hoboken, N.J., Honolulu, Hawaii, Jamaica, L.I., N.Y., Laredo, Tex., Miami, Fla., New Orleans, La., San Francisco, Calif., San Juan, P.R., San Pedro, Calif., or Seattle, Wash., for whatever disposition is deemed warranted. If so diverted, the plant quarantine inspector shall attach to the package the yellow and green special mailing tag addressed to the proper quarantine station. A package so diverted shall be accompanied by customs card Form 3511 and transmitted to the appropriate Customs office for referral to the Plant Quarantine Station. Envelopes containing customs card Form 3511 addressed to the collector of customs, New York, N.Y., shall contain a notation that the material is to be referred to the Plant Protection and Quarantine Programs, Hoboken, N.J.
The customs officers at Washington, DC, Brownsville, Tex., Hoboken, N.J., Honolulu, Hawaii, Jamaica, L.I., N.Y., Laredo, Tex., Miami, Fla., New Orleans, La., San Francisco, Calif., San Juan, P.R., San Pedro, Calif., or Seattle, Wash., shall keep a record of such packages as may be delivered to representatives of the Department of Agriculture, and upon the return thereof shall prepare a mail entry to accompany the dutiable package and deliver it to the postmaster for delivery or onward dispatch or in appropriate cases subject the shipment to formal customs entry procedure.
[28 FR 5204, May 24, 1963]
Where the plant quarantine inspector requires the entire shipment to be returned to the country of origin as a prohibited importation (in which event he shall endorse his action thereon) and delivers the shipment to the collector of customs, the collector shall in turn deliver it to the postmaster for dispatch to the country of origin. If, upon examination, the plant material is deemed dangerous to plant life, the collector of customs shall permit the plant quarantine inspector to destroy immediately both the container and its contents. In either case the plant quarantine inspector shall notify the addressee of the action taken and the reason therefor. If the objectionable plant material forms only a portion of the contents of the mail package and in the judgment of the inspector the package can safely be delivered to the addressee, after removing and destroying the objectionable material, such procedure is authorized. In the latter case the inspector shall place in the package a memorandum (Form AQI-387) informing the addressee of the action taken by the inspector and describing the matter which has been seized and destroyed and the reasons therefor.
The foregoing instructions shall be followed in the treatment of packages containing plants or plant products received in closed mail dispatches made up for transmission directly to a post office located at a customs port at which no plant quarantine inspector is stationed. Such packages (accompanied by customs card Form 3511) shall be forwarded by the collector of customs through the postmaster to the most accessible location listed in § 351.2 for appropriate treatment in the manner hereinbefore provided. This procedure shall also be followed in respect to such packages which are forwarded to unlisted post offices from the post office of original receipt, without having received plant quarantine examination. Packages discovered at post offices where no customs officer is located shall be forwarded by the postmaster under his official penalty envelope addressed to the collector of customs at the most accessible location listed for appropriate treatment as prescribed herein.
To collectors of customs and others concerned:
(a) Shipments of plant material may be imported by mail free of duty for immediate exportation by mail subject to the following regulations, which have been approved by the Department of Agriculture and the Post Office Department:
(1) Each shipment shall be dispatched in the mails from abroad, accompanied by a yellow and green special mail tag bearing the serial number of the permit for entry for immediate exportation or immediate transportation and exportation, issued by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and also the postal form of customs declaration.
(2) Upon arrival, the shipment shall be detained by, or redispatched to, the postmaster at Washington, DC, Brownsville, Tex., Hoboken, N.J., Honolulu, Hawaii, Jamaica, L.I., N.Y., Laredo, Tex., Miami, Fla., New Orleans, La., San Francisco, Calif., San Juan, P.R., San Pedro, Calif., or Seattle, Wash., as may be appropriate, according to the address on the yellow and green tag, and there submitted to the customs officer and the Federal quarantine inspector. The merchandise shall under no circumstances be permitted to enter the commerce of the United States.
(3) After inspection by the customs and quarantine officers, and with their approval, the addressee, or his authorized agent, shall repack and readdress the mail parcel under customs supervision; affix to the parcel the necessary postage, and comply with other mailing requirements, after which the parcel shall be delivered to the postmaster for exportation by mail pursuant to 19 CFR 9.11(a). The contents of the original parcel may be subdivided and exported in separate parcels in like manner.
(4) It will not be necessary to issue a customs mail entry nor to require formal entry of the shipments.
(5) The mail shipments referred to shall be accorded special handling only at the points specified in paragraph (a)(2) of this section.
(6) The foregoing procedure shall not affect the movement of plant material in the international mails in transit through the United States.